Michelle Lujan Grisham and PED Secretary Karen Trujillo, Ph.D.

CHAOS: Educators and legislators respond to MLG’s firing of PED Sec.

On Monday, it was reported that Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham ordered the dismissal of her Public Education secretary, Karen Trujillo, Ph.D., who only lasted six months in the job. The Governor didn’t even have the respect to fire Trujillo herself, instead tasking her chief operations officer with the responsibility.

Official photo of Karen Trujillo, Ph.D.

According to the Governor’s website, Trujillo “has 25 years of experience in education, including nearly a decade in the classroom and 20 years working in professional development.” The web page has now been deleted, but an archive still exists.

The decision apparently came out of nowhere, as Trujillo said, “Governor’s Office hadn’t raised any issues with her job performance that would make her think her employment was in jeopardy.” Regardless, the Governor made the brash decision to fire the Secretary, even though six months seems hardly a time frame to make such a conclusion of a newly-appointed cabinet member.

New Mexico Rep. Rebecca Dow (R-38) released a statement on Facebook, questioning the Governor’s decision, saying “I’ve respected Karen for many years. Having someone at the head of PED with direct experience was so needed. Doesn’t seem realistic that her efforts have failed when not one single student outcome has been measured since she’s been in charge. The changes to measure just became law July 1st. School hasn’t even started. My guess- she’s a better educator than she is a bureaucrat. Someone should snatch her up quickly.”

Rep. Rebecca Dow (R-38)

Todd Lindsay, the Superintendent of Carrizozo Municipal School District agreed with Rep. Dow’s comments, writing “As a Superintendent of a school district today and a teacher several years that had the privilege to work with Dr. Trujillo at Hot Springs, I was extremely delighted that she was chosen to lead the PED. Karen is a great person who had our kids in her heart. MLG is here to ruin our State and this is just one more of her huge mistakes. Dr. Karen Trujillo is a winner and she will go somewhere and still help education in New Mexico we need to remember all this when it’s time to vote.”

State Rep. Alonzo Baldonado (R-8) responded as well, tweeting “There might be a little fear at PED….”

“Thank you for being so open to [listen to] my concerns, it was an honor working with you, I’m very disappointed with this decision,” wrote Rep. Gail Armstrong (R-49) in a comment on Trujillo’s post on the matter.

Many of these same sentiments can be seen daily on social media, as New Mexicans are fed up with Michelle Lujan Grisham’s refusal to speak on the real issues with the REAL people who work to make our state better. 

One such dissenting voice to Grisham is Otero County Commissioner Cuoy Griffin, who was snubbed on the Governor’s visit to the area. According to Griffin, the Governor gave him a call and barely let him speak, then hung up on him. 

During the short phone call, where she only allowed him a few points to speak about and repeatedly scolded him to “respect” her office, Griffin brought up the crisis on the border and the Governor’s removal of the New Mexico National Guard from the area. The governor scoffed at his objection, telling him she did not support a “militarized zone,” although the National Guard only would assist with administrative and clerical work to help the Department of Homeland Security. Griffin then told her, “Well, I’m sure the Cartel would support that position,” to which Grisham “completely blew her top,” and started “yelling into the phone,” accusing Griffin of associating her with the Cartel.

The unpopular governor, who was recently ranked by the nonpartisan Morning Consult as one of the 10 least popular governors in America with 43% of citizens disapproving, is showing why New Mexicans don’t trust her. By frivolously firing cabinet secretaries, disrespecting elected officials trying to have reasonable conversations with her, and repeatedly insulting New Mexicans shows exactly why she is so unpopular and distrusted. 

4 thoughts on “CHAOS: Educators and legislators respond to MLG’s firing of PED Sec.”

  1. “By frivolously firing cabinet secretaries, disrespecting elected officials trying to have reasonable conversations with her, and repeatedly insulting New Mexicans shows exactly why she is so unpopular and distrusted. ”

    Lujan Grisham has been such a disappointment as NM governor. And to think we have to put up with her tyranny for three more years.

  2. Firing Karen Trujillo this way is just wrong.This governor will not even talk to the people. It is time to recall her.and yes she is part of the cartel.If her is not prove it.We have know crisis are our southern border,that what she says.And she is suing the government for what.She needs to step down before she falls down.

  3. New Mexico education is beyond frustrating. Trujillo was the first Secretary of Ed who came and actually reached out to real-live teachers. She came to a local AP conference and personally introduced herself. Trujillo made me (a Civil Engineer turned AP Physics teacher) cautiously hopeful that change was on the horizon. But our Gov thinks she lacked “leadership” qualities. Is that because she dared to meet with the teacher pions? Trujillo was a fellow New Mexican with real classroom experience. Now they are opening the search Nationwide? Seriously? Gov is also now looking for Vendors to replace the PARCC. I have one simple word. ACT. Vendors implies profits for an out of state firm and possible kickbacks perhaps? Why are we looking to spend money elsewhere. I don’t know if I’m more frustrated as a teacher or more furious as a taxpayer. I think most parents would be appalled to know how their childrens’ days go being led by teachers who are under supported, over burdened, and simply don’t have the time or energy to put their best foot forward. There are some great teachers out there because they still manage to put their students first. But it is always at the expense of their own families and health. Other teachers just don’t have the energy and their spirits have been drained to give your children the best. And sometimes that just means a smile and some patience. Please talk to your children. They’ll tell you it’s normal. Visit the schools, visit the classrooms. Talk to your child’s teachers. They deserve a much better “normal.” FED UP!

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