Nick Hinrichsen picked to take over Senate District 3 seat as Garcia departs

Posted at 11:03 AM, Feb 21, 2022

DENVER – Nick Hinrichsen, the Democratic operations supervisor for Pueblo Transit, was elected Saturday to take over for departing Pueblo County Sen. Leroy Garcia.

“I’m honored to be your new State Senator,” Hinrichsen said in a statement posted to his Facebook page. “While I’m thrilled with today’s results, the work is far from finished.”

Hinrichsen will represent Senate District 3 through the end of this year’s session, and is running for election to the Senate seat in November as well. He will be sworn in this week after Garcia’s departure.

Hinrichsen, an Army veteran, received the most votes in both rounds of voting in Saturday’s special election in Pueblo and beat out Jason Muñoz for the seat.

He is the husband of former state Rep. Bri Buentello, D-Pueblo, who was defeated by Republican Rep. Stephanie Luck in last year’s election.

Newly elected Senate President Steve Fenberg, D-Boulder, previously endorsed Hinrichsen and offered him his congratulations over the weekend.

“The people of Pueblo can rest easy knowing they will have a strong voice representing them in the Colorado Senate,” Fenberg said in a statement. “I look forward to working alongside Senator-elect Hinrichsen to move Colorado forward by building safer and healthier communities, making Colorado a more affordable place to live, and setting our students up for success.”

Garcia announced Feb. 3 he would be leaving his seat effective Feb. 23 to take a job at the Pentagon. Senate Democrats on Feb. 9 picked Fenberg as the new president and a new majority leader and Joint Budget Committee members – changes which will take effect after the Senate votes and the daily session adjourns on Feb. 23.