October 2, 2023

CONTACT: Sharon Kayne, Communications Director, NM Voices for Children,
OR: Alex McCausland, Graphics and Social Media Manager,

ALBUQUERQUE, NM—Five staff members from the policy team at NM Voices for Children have been promoted. Paige Knight, MPP, and Jacob Vigil, MSW, who were both Senior Research and Policy Analysts, have been promoted to Deputy Policy Directors. Javier Rojo, MPA, and Emily Wildau, MPP, who were both Research and Policy Analysts, have been promoted to Senior Research and Policy Analysts. Lydia Paukei, JD, MSW, who was a Tribal Policy Fellow and Research and Policy Analyst, has been promoted to Policy Counsel.

“NM Voices has an exceptionally skilled, committed, and hard-working staff across so many policy areas, including tax and budget, economic justice, early childhood, education, and tribal policy issues,” said Amber Wallin, Executive Director of the advocacy organization. “These promotions reflect the great talent and capacity growth on our team and will be a boon to New Mexico’s families and children as we continue our work to improve outcomes for all.”

Paige Knight joined NM Voices in 2018 and focuses on tax, fiscal policy, and environmental issues. She was promoted to Senior Policy Analyst in 2022. She received her BA in Economics from Luther College in Iowa and her Master’s in Public Policy from UNM. Jacob Vigil joined NM Voices in 2018 to focus on anti-poverty initiatives, including economic security, safety net, and early care and education policies, which he’s done through research and statewide outreach and advocacy. He was promoted to Senior Policy Analyst in 2022. Jacob holds a BA in Latin American History from Pomona College in Claremont, CA, and a Master’s in Social Work from Loyola University Chicago. As Deputy Policy Directors the pair will oversee the analyst team and provide strategy support and direction on policy, outreach, and research issues.

Javier Rojo joined NM Voices in 2019. He focuses on immigration, the U.S. Census, tax and budget issues, and criminal fines and fees. He completed his undergraduate education at UNM where he studied economics, philosophy, and statistics, and a Master’s in Public Affairs at Princeton University. Emily Wildau joined NM Voices in 2020. She helps coordinate the KIDS COUNT program and focuses on issues related to early childhood, education, and family economic security. She completed her BA in English Rhetoric at NMSU and earned her Master’s in Public Policy at UNM.

Lydia Paukei joined NM Voices in August 2021 as a fellow through the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. Her focus is on state policies that impact Native American children, families, tribes, and pueblos in the state. Lydia graduated with a Juris Doctor and an Indian Law Certificate from the UNM School of Law. She also has a Master’s of Social Work and a BA in American Indian Studies from the University of Minnesota. Lydia is an enrolled member of the Oneida Nation (WI) and a direct descendant of the Red Lake Nation. As Policy Counsel she will provide legal research and analysis of NM Voices’ policy priorities with a special focus on state policies that impact Native American children, families, tribal nations, and pueblos in the state.

Their full biographies are available here and their heads shots are available upon request.


New Mexico Voices for Children is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization advocating for policies to improve the health and well-being of New Mexico’s children, families and communities. 625 Silver Ave. SW, Suite 195, Albuquerque, NM 87102; 505-244-9505 (p);