Gov. names new head of aging agency
SANTA FE – Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham on Friday announced Katrina Hotrum-Lopez would succeed Alice Liu McCoy as secretary of the state Aging and Long-Term Services Department upon McCoy’s hiring as executive director of the state Developmental Disabilities Planning Council.
The council board voted in late July to select McCoy as its new director. McCoy, an attorney with extensive and diverse experience in representing and advocating for individuals with disabilities, will remain a key piece of the Lujan Grisham administration, bringing energetic new leadership to an important advocacy area that has received inadequate attention from the state in recent years.
“Alice isn’t going far, and I’m very glad for that,” Gov. Lujan Grisham said. “She began the essential work of rebuilding an agency that was left out to dry by the prior administration; she made great strides. Alice has fought for marginalized and disadvantaged New Mexicans her entire career, and I’m incredibly excited she will have an opportunity to continue that work within our administration, delivering meaningful guardianship reform. We have got to get that right.
“Alice and Katrina will work very closely together,” the governor added. “We continue to build up our team of devoted advocates in our Cabinet, and New Mexicans will be the beneficiaries of their expertise and passion.”
Hotrum-Lopez has been the director of behavioral health services at Bernalillo County since 2016. Prior to that, she was director of the county’s substance abuse programs. From 2007 to 2010, Hotrum-Lopez was deputy Cabinet secretary of the state Department of Health, one of several roles she held there. Before working at the health department, Hotrum-Lopez worked for six years in the agency she will now lead, first as associate state ombudsman, then as state ombudsman and finally as director of the elder rights division. She earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Alaska at Fairbanks and a master’s degree in family studies from the University of New Mexico.
“I very much look forward to serving the state in this new role,” McCoy said. “We now have an opportunity to transform the DDPC and establish a strong, persistent voice that advocates for New Mexicans living with disabilities. I’ve been honored and privileged to work with the dedicated, hard-working team at Aging and Long-Term Services and am deeply grateful for their support during this transition. We will continue working together to make a meaningful difference in the lives of the most vulnerable New Mexicans.”
“I’m honored to have the chance to join the team of experienced and thoughtful leaders in the governor’s Cabinet,” Hotrum-Lopez said. “I’m grateful Alice will continue to be an asset to the department, and I’m excited to get started. Our focus will continue to be reforming the services and oversight we provide to make them the very best in the country. New Mexicans deserve no less.”