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October 1, 2012

Dr. Catherine Torres is out as New Mexico Department of Health Cabinet Secretary

Memo reads: "Dr. Catherine Torres resigns". 




Ding Dong! The Witch is dead. Which old Witch? The Wicked Witch!
Ding Dong! The Wicked Witch is dead.



Governor Susana Martinez finally poured a bucket of water on Dr. Catherine Torres killing her tumultuous tenor at New Mexico’s Department of Health (Technically, Dr. Torres resigned effective October 15th). No word yet what will happen to all her flying monkey henchmen but those who are classified employees will have a new boss to brown-nose to so they can ensure their survival.

Torres cites personal reasons including the passing of her mother and her wanting to spend more time with her family.  We do extend our condolences Dr. Torres and her family for their loss which was several months ago.  It was inevitable that Dr. Torres' stay at DOH would end with her leaving prematurely.  Brad McGrath will be acting cabinet secretary until a replacement is found.

Employees in the Runnels building have been happy, excited and relieved.  One employee stated that it seems like a good dream and they are afraid they will wake up and Torres' reign would continue.  Only one thing is certain and that is DOH employees do see brighter days ahead.  Employees still have not received anything from management about the announcement other than some divisions circulating an email with following press release.  Brad McGrath is said to be sending an email this afternoon with this new development and what it means to the department.

Here is the news release:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 1, 2012

 
Contact: Scott Darnell
 
 
GOVERNOR SUSANA MARTINEZ ANNOUNCES RESIGNATION OF DOH SECRETARY DR. CATHERINE TORRES
 
SANTA FE – Governor Susana Martinez announced today that Dr. Catherine Torres is resigning from her position as Secretary of the New Mexico Department of Health. Dr. Torres was appointed to the position by Governor Martinez in January 2011. Prior to joining the administration, she was a practicing pediatrician in Las Cruces.
 
“I’m grateful to Dr. Torres for her hard work leading one of our largest state agencies,” said Governor Martinez. “During her time as Cabinet Secretary, Dr. Torres demonstrated an unwavering commitment to the health and well-being of all New Mexicans. I thank her for her service and I wish her the very best in her future endeavors.”
 
“It has been an honor to serve as the Cabinet Secretary for the Department of Health for nearly two years,” Dr. Torres commented. “I am extremely proud of the work that we have been able to accomplish to improve our state and the lives of the people of New Mexico. Unfortunately, due to recent personal developments, including the passing of my mother and a heartfelt desire to spend time with my family, it is time to move on. I thank the governor for her confidence in me as the leader of the New Mexico Department of Health.”
 
Dr. Torres will continue to work with the governor’s office to ensure a smooth transition to new permanent leadership at the Department of Health. Until a replacement is appointed, Deputy Secretary Brad McGrath will assume the duties of secretary. Secretary Torres’ resignation is effective two weeks from today.
 
###
Dr. Torres’ welcomed departure does not solve all of DOH’s problems but it does allow employees and the public to hope that someday there might be light at the end of the tunnel. We aren't hanging up any "Mission Accomplished," banners just yet.

Joey Peters of the Santa Fe Reporter put up this blog post.   Milan Simonich also had a blog post that fairly summarized Torres' tenure at DOH.  Twitter lit up with posts of Torres' resignation with some even describing her as "embattled."

What are your thoughts on this remarkable piece of news? We will add info to this post as it becomes available.

[Update]

The Santa Fe New Mexican wrote an article that has more substance than the standard rehash of press release.  The story does highlight DOH employees out on administrative leave like Lori Montegomery whom has been on paid admin leave since July 18th as well as our website.
 
Link to SF New Mexican - Read the story here. to SF New Mexican

Click on picture to enlarge
 
The the Albuquerque Journal also mentions the website and characterized postings and comments as, "mean-spirited attacks."  Can't win them all. See the article here.
 
The most crital article I have come across is from Dr. Torres' last place of residency Las Cruces.  See here. 


47 comments:

  1. Can we have her personal armed security guard escort out of the Runnels building?

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  2. Auf Wiedersehen!

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  3. Stephie In The City10/1/12, 12:21 PM

    The real act here is to start grassroots plan on making sure this governor does not get re-elected.

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  4. So Martinez is grateful for the havoc Torres wreaked on DOH? And Torres is extremely proud? Good to know.

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  5. We are going out for beers after work to celebrate! To think a lot of people hate Mondays. Best Monday ever!

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  6. “I’m extremely proud of the work that we have been able to accomplish to improve our state and the lives of the people of New Mexico.”

    Reaaally? You call firing everyone in the department who didn't kiss your @$$ an accoplishment? You call blurting the "F" word in an auditorium full of people an accomplishment? Oh wait or is it attending meetings and not knowing what the hell you're talking about an accomplishment? You have your head so full of air. Sending your "assistant" to get you coffee from across town in a city he doesn't know. Or how about the fact that you think you're so high and mighty that your exempt from following rules. You have been a complete disgrace to the dept of health. i can tell you that the employees who won't sink down to the level of kissing your @$$ are going to celebrate your "resignation". Rumor has it you were being fired so you resigned instead. Whatever the reason, everyone is super happy and relieved!

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    Replies
    1. Dismantling the cannabis office is also an accomplishment.

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  7. Employees were literally dancing in the hallways when the e-mail dropped. Shrieks of joy could be heard from one office to the next as people read the announcement. People came out of their offices just to smile at each other. Several folks said that people's behavior was akin to that of Americans when the end of World War II as announced. 20 years from now, DOH employees will still recall where they when they heard this news. Please, Legislators, do not let history repeat itself with the appointment of the next health secretary.

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  8. Things will not be that much better under Brad. Be carefull and do not let your guard down. He needs to be the next one to go.

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    Replies
    1. I agree 100%. The Roswell cronyism with Keith Gardner needs to end. We need to hire the best people not the most likely to be loyal to the administration. We saw how that strategy played out.

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  9. Awesome news, brightened up a Monday. Now when does justice really prevail and the investigation begin into all the illegal contracts and PO's flying out of Bernice Gonzalez' section. If I was Bernice, Deniece,or Andrea I would be very afraid. Bernice, was it really worth doing illegal things for Torres to get money, I thinks not. So close to retirement too. Jim Green, don't let the door knob hit you on your flat ass the Good Lord split you!! We all know you will be Resigning or Retiring very, very soon, right future Secretary McGrath. Are you too gonna take on the liability of the "Circle of Trash" ? If you do you are a very unwise man.

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  10. Is that a picture of Rosie O' Donell or Catherine Torres on the KRQE website article? Either way, both are scary looking, lol.

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    1. Is there a difference?

      http://media2.krqe.com//photo/2011/01/06/krqe-mug-dr-catherine-torres-bd_20110106132533_140_105.JPG

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  11. Today is our independence day. Oct 1, 2012.

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  12. Great job Jonathan Publix. Happy for you DOH Nation. Happy for New Mexico. Let us never forget.

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    Replies
    1. Our mission is far from over. We need to research and vet the next cabinet secretary. If they don't cut the mustard we need to get that information out there so they are not confirmed. We will need to be more active in the process this time around.

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  13. Don't forget about Valerie and her screaming high heels. Her ass needs to be looked at with her huge raise all of a sudden as well as not meeting the qualifications and receiving a promotion. I think Larry Barker should be contacted to look into DOH payroll. Oh and don't forget Ivy Martinez.

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  14. Jonathan, keep up the work! Let's clean house at DOH!

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  15. Bernice is fat tick looking for a new host to suck the blood out of the next secretary. Good luck brad we already heard she's got u by the balls. Her and Valerie lvy should get washed out with tick shampoo. Stop spreading this disease.

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    Replies
    1. Great analogy! The Circle must find a new host (Secretary) to leach onto to. Circle, on the bright side you might be able to get another raise. Maybe, you can go to the movies and eat out the new Secretary.

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    2. I hope you meant eat out with the new Secretary!

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    3. anonymous 210/2/12, 7:59 PM

      Maybe or Maybe not! LOL...

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    4. If it gets them ahead I wouldn't put it past them.

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  16. Congrats DOH!!!!! After over a year and half of constant complaints you have finally been heard. Each of you that stood strong and toughed it out should be proud of yourself. I was one of the lucky ones who was able to leave but not without being accused of being the Blogger and losing what I call my DOH family. Instead of negativity now please start seeing positives as the toxin from DOH is gone don't let her win by allowing you to carry that toxin within yourselves. Thanks Jonathan and Joey for sticking to your promise of not giving up until she was out! I am also proud that I stood up for something that was wrong because unlike some people, I have a backbone.

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  17. Health Worker10/3/12, 7:48 AM

    Johnathan, I think the next mission of nmdohcrisis should be looking into the reclassification procedures that allowed the entitled "Circle of trash" to grant themselves new titles and compensation, while other areas within ASD are not even allowed an extra position, even though they are the most short staffed. Start with finding out what criteria HR (Teresa) used to make these decisions. Final closure on this dark and bleak chapter of DOH should see those that have caused the majority of the chaos and drama at DOH be humbled and put in their rightful place. Wouldn't you agree?

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    Replies
    1. I agree 100%! We will be looking into how and why this happened and how we can fix it. We need more transparency. Time to dump the trash.

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    2. Try looking into the mess at the DOH facilities. There is where you will find more about Mr. Mcgrath and all that administrators are NOT doing appropriately.

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  18. Did anyone other than the circle of trash go to Mr. Mcgrath's meeting on Wednesday or Thursday? BEWARE people, he is the snake in the grass and will bite anyone who doesn't go along with his vision. He's been in charge for months and is the reason some good people have been fired. Dr. Torres hasn't been running DOH for the past year, Mr. Mcgrath has because he's great friends with Keith Gardner and they have planned all along to get Torres out and Mcgrath in. It's funny, Torres trusted Mcgrath and he stabbed her in the back just like he will everyone else who gets in his way and challenges his power. The raises that Bernice and Eileen all came from Mcgrath wanting to increase their wages. All the exceptions to open recruitment came from Mcgrath. There is Dr. Adams, Ms. Nash, Mr. Trujillo all with Office of Facilities Management and none had to apply for a job. You have Ty promoted, Eileen promoted, Bernice promoted, Mike Mulligan back in the inner circle even after having an affair with a co-worker who was fired but he gets to keep his job. The facilities, especially Roswell are full of Mcgrath picks. Sequoah isn't the only facility to have a massive contract with the psychiatric group; Roswell and Las Vegas facilities also have a contract with the group and it was all arranged by Mcgrath, not Gardner. Someone needs to look into this and see where the core of all the questionable activity is coming from. You will find its Mcgrath! Call and ask current and past employees! Letters should be going to Martinez letting her know what he is like!

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    Replies
    1. I never really doubted McGrath had been calling the shots at DOH for the past few months.

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    2. Trust no one. Eileen and Mike have talked a lot of trash about the same people who are taking care of them. They act like they are part of the regular employees, but they are not. They are just looking out for their pocketbooks. For the record, Mike has played around with more than one co-worker at DOH. But, look at what a happy man he appears to be.

      Delete
  19. I heard when Bradley first started as the administrator in Roswell that he threatened to fire a lot of employees. He put a person in the compliance position that was a rat for him and she isn't even qualified. He let this person run off staff and then dropped her because the union started asking questions and Mcgrath didn't want to be tied to her. The real story is in Roswell. I heard he was fired from the local hospital but that is where he worked with the psychiatrist group Mirin and how Mirin got awarded an RFP and contracts that pay him $260 per hour or $2,000 per day. The SF Reporter shoud call people in Roswell!

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    Replies
    1. The contract was written for $750,000.00 and Bradley's name is signed on the contract. Most of the time the Psychitrists are only in the building for a couple of hours per day, so thats an easy $2000 per day. The nick name for NMRC is now called sunrise south.

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    2. Maybe Bradley is getting a cut from Dr. Untouchable's contract?

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    3. That appears to be the case since he isn't making that much money in his current job. It's him rubbing Mirin's back and Mirin greasin McGrath's hand.

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    4. Has anyone actually seen the contracts? Where are they?

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    5. Yes, I have seen the Mirin contracts. What do you want to know? The $2,000 a day or $260 per hour us accurate along with the RFP being issued to New Mexico Psychiatric Services but contracts issued as Healing Garden. The facilities have copies as does Bernice Gonzales, Bradley McGrath, Cathy Thompson, Andrea Sisnerios.

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    6. I believe it is $250/hr per contract and RFP. Barton and Assoc. had a rate of $260 per hour when they were approved. All other providers approved has substantially lower. Next lower was $199 /hour and the rest were in the $160s and $170s per hour. Sure sounds like the taxpayers are being looked after here.

      We are on it. You won't be disappointed.

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  20. As a citizen of New Mexico, I would like to ask this question- WHY is a LAWYER running our Department of Health?? Would the Attorney General's office hire a medical doctor to oversee legal departments? I don't think so. Something stinks.

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  21. See today's ABQ Joutnal: http://www.abqjournal.com/main/2012/10/08/upfront/health-department-transition-is-welcomed.html

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    1. Well written and well worded article. Puts things exactly as they were being run under Torres. It is sad that Autistic children and terminally ill people had to suffer because of her. I encourage all to read this article. I had forgotten about all the fuss she made on the DOH logo. Wonder if McGrath will go with a Three Stooges theme on his, lol. "Circle of Trash", don't think that Karma has forgotten you, because it hasn't. It took 18 months for it to catch up to Torres. Eventually it will bite you in your fat asses too.

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  22. This is government run amok. Dr. Mirin is running Sequoyah as medical director and is changing policies without employees knowing about the changes. There's a different story everyday depending on who you talk to. None of the policies are written so employees don't know what's expected of them? These psychiatrists also know nothing about adolescent mental health and the specific population that Sequoyah serves suggesting that fragile teens who have been through all of the CYFD system go to jail as the next step. Sequoyah used to be the only placement for these kids. These psychiatrists act like the clients "make them look bad." Torres and whomever is behind her has made a decent system for delivery of mental health a mockery. Luckily some good employees have stayed and continue to do good work with the clients. None of these guys care about good health care since they've been busy making deals and firing great employees that get in their way or incite their paranoia.

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    1. just wondering10/8/12, 7:12 PM

      Have they stopped chemically sedating the kids?

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    2. For the most part yet the goal is to use no SCM restraints. These are extremely aggressive teens that regularly hurt staff and themselves especially when staff can't use safe crisis management to keep everyone safe.

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    3. Sill wondering10/9/12, 5:19 PM

      The staff can't use safe crisi management? How come?

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  23. Crazy Cathy never did return to the Runnels after the Gov. "let her resign."

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  24. Why is the non-profit Carlsbad Mental Health Services under a Medicaid fraud investigation? If they close down those poor clients would be routed to the "for profit" arena. This stinks to High Heaven.

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  25. Dr. Babak Mirin used to be associated with CMHS - wonder if he did something. He is registered as having several corporations, many of which are listed as in "bad standing".

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