James Jimenez to head Voices for Children

By Rick Nathanson, Albuquerque Journal
August 2, 2016

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — James Jimenez, a former chief of staff under Gov. Bill Richardson, former cabinet secretary of the state Department of Finance and Administration and former Rio Rancho city manager, is the new executive director for New Mexico Voices for Children, it was announced Tuesday.

He replaces Veronica C. García, who had been executive director since 2012 and who recently resigned to accept a position as interim superintendent of the Santa Fe Public Schools.

Jimenez has been with New Mexico Voices for Children since 2013, serving as its director of Policy, Research and Advocacy Integration. He also serves on the boards of directors for several non-profits and is an adjunct professor at the University of New Mexico’s School of Public Administration.

“James is the perfect candidate to lead Voices for Children for so many reasons,” said Don Simonson, co-chair of the board. He and the rest of the board and staff “feel very fortunate that he was interested in taking the helm,” adding that his background in state and city government and his experience in “crafting, advocating for, and administering public policy” makes him an excellent manager.

“It’s really an honor to be chosen to lead this organization and build on the work done by former executive directors,” Jimenez said. “New Mexico Voices for Children does exceptional and important work. By speaking up for those who have no voice, we make a difference not just in the lives of children, but in the quality of life for all,” he added.

New Mexico Voices for Children is a non-partisan, non-profit organization that advocates for policies to improve the health and well-being of low-income children, families and communities throughout the state. It has an annual budget of just over $1 million, most of which comes from grants from private foundations.

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