Governor Lujan Grisham announces corrections appointee
SANTA FE — Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham on Thursday named her final Cabinet-level appointee.
The governor announced:
– Julie Jones: Department of Corrections
“Julie Jones had one of the toughest jobs in the country, and I’m thrilled she’s agreed to come to New Mexico,” Gov. Lujan Grisham said. “Our Corrections Department needs assertive, proactive leadership, and Julie has demonstrated her ability to enact change in a statewide prison system. I’m eager to see her, alongside our other incredible Cabinet appointees, get to work.”
Julie Jones was the Secretary of the Florida Department of Corrections, the third largest state system in the country and Florida’s largest state agency, from 2015 until this year. Leading a department of more than 24,000 employees and with a budget of $2.5 billion, Jones oversaw the development of a new rehabilitative strategy, a reorganization of the department’s regional and central office structures, and established new fiscal standards and a recruitment and retention strategy. Jones was previously the executive director of the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, where she realigned the Florida Highway Patrol command structure to increase the number of troops patrolling Florida roadways and implemented multi-year financial modeling. Prior to that, Jones was the director of law enforcement at the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. She has a diverse background of professional science positions, as well, having served as a biologist at the state Game and Fish Commission and Department of Natural Resources prior to her law enforcement and correctional experience. Jones earned bachelor and master of science degrees from Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, Fla.
The governor also introduced Diego Arencón, a member of the Governor’s Office staff, who has been helping to oversee management the Corrections Department in the absence of a secretary-designate, among other duties. Arencón, a native of the Barelas neighborhood in Albuquerque, is the executive policy advisor for labor management affairs and was a 22-year veteran of the Albuquerque Fire Department, serving as the union president for IAFF Local 244 for a dozen years, as state president of the New Mexico Professional Firefighters Association and previously as the international District Field Representative for the IAFF.