President Whitney Holland
ALBUQUERQUE — American Federation of Teachers (AFT) New Mexico President Whitney Holland, AFT New Mexico Executive Vice President Kathy Chavez, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham, and Lt. Gov. Howie Morales released the following statements:
Holland and Chavez said, “AFT New Mexico’s Executive Council has unanimously endorsed Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham and Lt. Gov. Howie Morales for re-election to a second term. Four years ago, Gov. Lujan Grisham promised a significant change in direction for public education in New Mexico after eight years of the Martinez administration, and she has kept her promises to New Mexico’s educational professionals.
“The Lujan Grisham administration has ended punitive school grading, revamped educator evaluations, invested historic levels of funding into our public school systems at all levels, instituted a Grow Your Own Teachers program to recruit educators already serving our students in our communities, reimagined the Public Education Department to a service-based department, fought to institute free higher education through the Opportunity Scholarship, expanded early education access for our youngest learners, shored up our educator pension fund, made significant advancements in educator pay and working conditions, and strengthened labor rights, all while navigating our students and educators through the on-going COVID-19 pandemic by focusing on the health, safety, and security of our communities.
“These efforts are just a snapshot of the advances we have achieved in partnership with the Lujan Grisham administration. This election year, educators will decide the path forward for public education in New Mexico, which under any other candidate would be a regression to the days of disrespect and disruption in our classrooms, which ultimately hurts our students and their families. The choice is crystal clear – Lujan Grisham and Morales have earned our trust and support through their record while in office.”
Lujan Grisham, “I am humbled to receive an endorsement for reelection from AFT New Mexico. New Mexico’s educators are the driving force behind our education system and the AFT New Mexico is a key advocate for New Mexico’s educators and school staff. I am proud that New Mexico has made great strides for educators by delivering the most significant raises for educators in the past 15 years, while also increasing base pay for New Mexico teachers, and allocating close to $1 billion for New Mexico’s schools and communities – none of which could have been accomplished without AFT New Mexico’s hard work and dedication. By working together, we will continue championing our education system for New Mexico’s teachers, students, and families.”
Morales said, “I am grateful to AFT New Mexico for their endorsement. As a former New Mexico educator myself, I know the amount of work educators do for their students cannot be appreciated or vocalized enough. By continuing to invest in our educators, students, and schools, New Mexico communities will continue to benefit for years to come.”