Our Staff

President and CEO

Adrienne R. Smith

Adrienne R. Smith is Founder, President and CEO of the New Mexico Caregivers Coalition, a statewide organization that advocates for and advances the professional development and workforce issues of New Mexico’s direct caregivers.
Ms. Smith has owned and operated a consulting firm since 2001, Education and Workforce Consultants, LLC, for which she worked for international, national, and state clients in the areas of youth development, youth employment, workforce development, resource development and advocacy. Her work includes development of national strategies to serve in-school and out-of-school youth in Honduras, Brazil and Indonesia through U.S. Agency for International Development.

Prior to 2001, Ms. Smith served as founding director of a national academy for training youth workers for executive positions, assisting a Board and the National Youth Employment Coalition (NYEC) in development, recruitment, selection and curriculum design of that academy. She developed a first academy for training Youth Opportunity (YO!) directors, grantees of $4-$12 million community-wide programs funded by the US Department of Labor. Adrienne’s work also includes four years as Vice President of the national Jobs for America’s Graduates, building program capacity within affiliated states and initiating programs in eight new states over a four-year period.

Adrienne served as a lead planner for data gathered to equalize school finance funding in Texas in the landmark state Supreme Court education finance lawsuit. She served Governor Ray Mabus of Mississippi from 1989-91 as advisory on literacy, education and the state’s first Commission on Workforce Excellence.

She has served on the Board of the Latin American Youth Center; the New Mexico Forum on Youth in Community; the National Youth Employment Coalition; and as Committee Chair for the American Association of University Women.
Adrienne has a Bachelor’s in Biology and a Masters in Public Policy and International Administration. She seeks opportunities for work and play with like-minded organizations and people.

Lead Organizer

Mauricio de Segovia

Mauricio de Segovia is Lead Organizer for New Mexico Caregivers Coalition. Mauricio’s work includes with NMCC includes building a base of caregivers at through training, outreach and mobilizing workers for action.
Mauricio has committed his career to organizing with workers and youth throughout the state. He first saw the Sandia mountain in Albuquerque on a visit to his grandparents at eight years old. He soon followed his grandparents to New Mexico to earn a BA in Government and a Master’s degree in Education at New Mexico State University in Las Cruces.
Since graduating, Mauricio has organized with youth on environmental justice, education access, immigrant justice and with workers. Before joining NMCC, he organized with hospital and health care workers for better wages, benefits and safe working conditions.
He enjoys reading, cooking and traveling to explore new cultures and unique experiences. Mauricio is a caregiver to a family member.

Respite Care Coordinator

Sharon Finarelli

Sharon Finarelli comes to NMCC from her role as Director of Community Partnerships with Presbyterian Health Plan. Sharon has worked with community-based organizations for over 30 years in a variety of settings and has a passion for improving community health.
In her previous role as Executive Director of the New Mexico Alliance of Health Councils, she had the opportunity to listen to health councils express community needs during the Covid-19 pandemic. Access to care is always one of the top three needs identified by communities in New Mexico.
Access to respite care is a need that many communities do not identify because they often don’t know what it is or how to access this type of care. Sharon is excited to have the opportunity to make respite care more accessible to communities throughout our state. After serving as a caregiver for her family members, Sharon understands the value of respite care to support the health and well-being of both the caregiver and the care recipient.
When Sharon isn’t working on improving community health, she loves to build her own health and well-being by hiking, kayaking, and biking throughout our beautiful state.  If you have a great place to explore in New Mexico or if you have ideas about how to make respite care more accessible, she would welcome your suggestions!


Vanessa Newell

Vanessa Newell is New Mexico Caregivers Coalition’s Intern. She is a senior at New Mexico Highlands University. Vanessa is working toward her Bachelor’s in Social Work. Before attending Highlands University, she attended Central New Mexico Community College and obtained an Associate’s degree in Human Services. During her spare time, Vanessa enjoys being with family and her dogs.
She also likes baking and crafting.

Consulting Outreach Manager and Trainer

Niki Sebastian

Niki Sebastian is a consulting Outreach Manager and Trainer for New Mexico Caregivers Coalition (NMCC). She holds a High Honors B.A. in psychology, and an M.A. in Language Pathology/Developmental Psychology, and has had a varied career ranging across law, research, education, government service, consulting, counseling, writing and health care. Now in her late seventies, she recently retired from full-time employment and has chosen to devote her energies to NMCC as a trainer and facilitator, continuing her career emphasis on helping others make decisions, learn, communicate effectively, and access the supports which enable them to progress toward their life goals. In her spare time, she maintains a blog as 1eclecticwriter@wordpress.com, designs jewelry, and maintains her garden and flock of hens at her home in rural northern New Mexico.

Consulting Outreach Manager

Valerie Tsosie

Valerie Tsosie is a consulting Outreach Manager for New Mexico Caregivers Coalition. She leads the So’ Tsoh Foundation, an organization that aims to create pathways to better health by offering innovative solutions for Diné caregivers to have access to behavioral and physical wellness, and quality care to the caregiver and their families. The So’ Tsoh Foundation offers comprehensive programs, specialty services, resources, and support to address general wellness concerns. So’ Tsoh utilizes an integrated Diné approach that takes into consideration the body, mind, and spirit connection.

As well as her role at the So’ Tsoh Foundation, Valerie is a volunteer outreach coordinator with Protect Native Elders—a diverse, indigenous-founded, intertribal, 100% volunteer charitable organization working to provide rapid relief support to indigenous communities struggling with COVID-19.

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