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DEI in Action

The Office of Equity and Inclusion (OEI) and the Economic Development Department (EDD) are advancing the City’s efforts to create a more equitable ecosystem through innovative programming and resources. We are working to develop an Albuquerque workforce that is representative of our diverse and unique city, and creating an economy that works for everyone.

Partnering for Action

In 2017, Mayor Tim Keller restructured the former Human Rights Office into the Office of Equity and Inclusion (OEI) and the Office of Civil Rights to better address racial disparities and to achieve equity across all populations and indicators. OEI is normalizing conversations about diversity, equity and inclusion through its Culture Change initiative which, since 2018, has trained more than 1,500 City employees and community members.

The Economic Development Department's mission is to make Albuquerque competitive in the global market by leading collaborative public-private partnerships, supporting business development and workforce development, and providing quality economic opportunities for local residents and businesses to thrive, while making a concerted effort to reverse disinvestment in underserved communities and neighborhoods, and ensuring equitable opportunities for everyone in Albuquerque.

Read: City Receives Two Awards for Outstanding Diversity in an Organization



DEI in the Business Community

MBDA Center

The Minority Business Development Center is a great example of how the City is utilizing the power of federal resources to help make the economies of Albuquerque and New Mexico more equitable for minority business enterprises. The MBDA Center offers support for scaling, and helps clients access capital, identify and secure contracts, access new markets, and receive training and capacity development support.

Black Investment Fund

In 2020 the City also created a dedicated 1 million dollar investment fund through City Council and the One Albuquerque Fund. The fund focuses on positive impact, and will support local Black businesses and residents, paying dividends in the form of new jobs, stronger communities, and a better economy for everyone in the city.

Focus on Early Childhood Careers

The early childhood education industry, which emerged as “essential” during the pandemic, is largely owned, operated, and staffed by women of color and provides a service that is critical to the rest of the economy. The City of Albuquerque is building workforce development partnerships that remove barriers and prepare individuals for career pathways in the early childhood education sector.


Workforce Development

Workforce initiative goals include strengthening workforce training and development programs that lead to better careers for underrepresented and underemployed workers in our community, with a focus on early childhood development.


Job Training Albuquerque

Job Training Albuquerque is the City’s premier workforce development program. JTA provides Albuquerque small businesses the opportunity to skill up their employees through free training courses in high-demand skills. This exciting initiative allows business owners and their employees to skill up in a wide variety of courses, from coding to sales, to commercial driver's license certification, accounting, early childhood training, and more.

Partnership with CNM

The City of Albuquerque Economic Development Department partnered with CNM to provide tuition scholarships for Early Childhood Multicultural Education Students, providing one-time scholarships for students who were enrolled in one of CNM’s Early Childhood Multicultural Education degree or certificate programs. The partnership also included technology scholarships for students to purchase a laptop.

Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute

With the goal of promoting racial equity in the early childhood education sector by ensuring that Albuquerque’s Native American community has access to industry-focused college and career readiness programming, the City of Albuquerque Economic Development Department partnered with the Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute (SIPI) to recruit and enroll SIPI students for participation in an early childhood education work experience program. Topics covered relate to college readiness, early childhood education careers, and culturally relevant resources.

Catholic Charities English for Special Purposes Course

Catholic Charities Center for Educational Opportunity partnered with the City of Albuquerque Economic Development team to implement an initiative to improve employment equity among low- and moderate-income households by providing an intensive 8-week English for Special Purposes course for prospective and current childcare workers. The goal of the course was to provide students with instruction in childcare-specific English providing the language skills necessary to gain employment in the early childhood education sector or to pursue further credentials in the field.

DEI in the City of Albuquerque's Workforce

The City of Albuquerque is among one of the top employers in New Mexico, with 5,500 employees. Mayor Tim Keller has committed to improve the representation of people with disabilities and people of color (particularly American Indian/Alaska Native, African American, Asian and Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander populations) in the City’s municipal workforce.

The Office of Equity and Inclusion has worked with the Human Resources Department to analyze the city’s municipal workforce diversity. OEI has also provided tools to operationalize equity with the use of data, including the development of the 2020 Workforce Diversity Report, which analyzes the demographic composition of the municipal workforce with the goal of creating a workforce reflective of the constituents it serves.

Through its Culture Change initiative which has trained more than 1,500 City employees since 2018, OEI has trained Human Resource Coordinators to inform HR coordinators how to prioritize diversity, equity and inclusion. The training communicated the primary goal of creating a workforce representative of Albuquerque constituents and the secondary goals of having:

  1. Equal attraction rates to jobs at the City for all demographic groups at all levels of the City;
  2. Equal selection rates at all levels;
  3. Equal retention rates at all levels; and
  4. Equal mobility and inclusion rates at all levels.


Culture Change Initiative

Learning opportunities for City Employees to become involved in changing the culture in local government.

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Office of Civil Rights

Working to protect the community by prohibiting discrimination.

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Language Access

Making CABQ services and resources available to all residents, including non-English speakers and those with vision and communication disabilities.

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OEI Story

The Office of Equity & Inclusion defines diversity as the inclusion of individuals representing more than one national origin, color, religion, socioeconomic stratum, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity, gender, disability, etc. It is a point of difference. Equity is acknowledging that different people start in different places due to racist historical context, and giving everyone what they need to succeed equally. Equity is about equal outcomes. Inclusion is defined as an environment where equity of opportunity exists for all employees to experience personal success and contribute to the organization’s success. Acceptance of difference.

In 2017 Mayor Tim Keller restructured the former Human Rights Office into the Office of Equity and Inclusion (OEI) and the Office of Civil Rights to better address racial disparities and to achieve equity across all populations and indicators. In 2020, the passage of ordinance R-20-75: Re-Affirming the City of Albuquerque’s Commitment to Addressing Racial and Social Inequity, codified the city’s commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion, and requiring a plan for putting equity into action. Structured to further support diverse communities of color and develop equity in governance, OEI houses the Office of African American Affairs, Office of Native American Affairs, and the Office of Immigrant & Refugee Affairs.  OEI is normalizing conversations about diversity, equity and inclusion through its culture change initiative which, since 2018, has trained more than 1,500 City employees and community members.

The Office of Equity and Inclusion was established by Mayor Tim Keller and has five major areas of responsibility:

  • Continuing to serve, as it has since 1974 under a different name, as a local civil and human rights advocacy resource dedicated to ensuring equal access and equitable opportunities for all people;
  • Dismantling systemic barriers to achieve racial, gender, health and socio-economic equality;
  • Supporting immigrant, refugee and other vulnerable communities to promote public safety, quality of life and human rights;
  • Acknowledging the original inhabitants of our region and coordinating with tribes and native communities to cultivate equity in the lives of Native Americans living in Albuquerque;
  • and equipping and inspiring our city workforce to embrace the diverse cultures that make Albuquerque the best place to live.

OEI Staff Pic 2021