Gov. Lujan Grisham announces the departure of Economic Development Secretary Alicia J. Keyes
SANTA FE – Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham announced Thursday the departure of New Mexico Economic Development Department Secretary Alicia J. Keyes.
“New Mexico’s economy is booming, and it’s more diverse than ever before. Wages are higher and we’re seeing historic job numbers,” said Gov. Lujan Grisham. “That’s no accident. Secretary Keyes’ commitment to carrying out the vision of my administration and her dedication to making New Mexico a great place to live have been integral to the economic health of our great state. I wish her the very best in the future.”
Keyes was appointed by Gov. Lujan Grisham in January 2019, the first woman to lead the EDD.
“My greatest joy has been collaborating with New Mexicans in every corner of the state to create higher-paying jobs and build economic security for future generations,” said Secretary Keyes. “I want to thank Gov. Lujan Grisham for this opportunity and unwavering support and encouragement. I’m looking forward to continuing to drive economic development forward in my next chapter.”
Keyes departs as the state sees its lowest unemployment rate since 2007 and an all-time high number of jobs. Under her leadership, the department’s programs reached new levels of success, including the Job Training Incentive Program recording its highest average wage at $27.08 an hour, up 28% from four years ago.
In the past four years, EDD utilized the Local Economic Development Act assisting 60 businesses and supporting more than 8,500 new jobs in New Mexico with an average annual wage of more than $64,000 – up 20% from 2019. The LEDA assistance is projected to result in $7.3 billion in new capital investment across the state; $580 million in new payroll; and a ten-year economic impact of $34 billion.
Under Gov. Lujan Grisham’s leadership, Keyes has spearheaded New Mexico’s efforts to diversify and grow the state economy, including expanding global trade by making key investments and relationships along the border, attracting new and expanded aerospace investment, establishing the state’s Office of Outdoor Recreation, and taking the state’s film and television industry to new heights. The state will soon offer training at the New Mexico Media Academy, a first-of-its-kind initiative of the administration to provide advanced hands-on training to New Mexicans in a growing industry.
Her last day will be July 13. Keyes plans to take personal time before pursuing opportunities in the private sector while remaining in New Mexico.
The administration is actively seeking Keyes’ successor.