ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Former New Mexico state Sen. Odis Echols, who later become a prom[auth] inent lobbyist, has died at the age of 82 after a long illness.
Lobbyist Scott Scanland said Echols died Thursday in Albuquerque and had battled dementia for several years.
Echols served in the Senate from 1967 to 1976, as a Clovis Democrat. During part of his tenure, he was the Senate majority whip and chairman of the Rules Committee.
Echols ran for governor in 1974, but lost in a six-way Democratic primary to Jerry Apodaca, who won the general election.
Scanland said Monday that Echols became a lobbyist in the late 1970s, and his clients included Bernalillo County and Sandia Pueblo.
Echols is survived by his wife, Millie Leahy, a son and grandchildren. Funeral arrangements are pending.