Retired New Mexico AIR National Guard Brigadier General Judy M. Griego was unanimously confirmed by the New Mexico Senate today as Secretary of the New Mexico Department of Veterans’ Services (DVS).
The native of Carnuel in eastern Bernalillo County had been appointed to the position by Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham on December 27. Today’s confirmation makes the appointment permanent.
“I am thrilled that the Senate agreed with me that General Griego has the management experience and leadership skills necessary to lead the Department of Veterans Services,” said Governor Lujan Grisham after being informed of the Secretary Griego’s confirmation. “She has a passion for helping the men and women who have served our country. She has a way of connecting with them. I am confident she will do an excellent job leading DVS.”
Secretary Griego had a distinguished and decorated 36-year military career, retiring in August of 2016 at the rank of Brigadier General—the first woman to be promoted to the rank of General in the history of the New Mexico National Guard.
She began her military service in 1979 by enlisting in the New Mexico Air National Guard. She worked her way through the enlisted ranks—attaining the rank of Master Sergeant. In 1991, she was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant upon graduation from the Academy of Military Science at McGhee-Tyson Air Force Base in Knoxville, TN.
In 2007, then-Lt. Col. Griego was deployed to Balad Air Base Iraq to serve in key leadership positions in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Her rise through the officer ranks culminated with her historic promotion to Brigadier General on December 1, 2011.
“As a native New Mexican, I am honored and humbled to be given this chance to serve my state’s veterans and their families,” said Secretary Griego. “I have firsthand knowledge of the sacrifices they’ve made to serve our country. The DVS staff and I will help veterans receive every VA and state veterans’ benefit to which they’re entitled—and will work to find ways to further improve their post-service lives.”
Along the way during her military service, Secretary Griego earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Professional Aeronautics and a Master of Science Degree in Aeronautical Sciences from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.
The New Mexico Department of Veterans Services has 14 offices statewide to serve the state’s 156,595 veterans and their families. Veterans needing assistance can call the agency toll-free at 1–(866) 433-8387 or find information at www.nmdvs.org.