Rebecca Sanford, Adelante’s new President/CEO accepted the New Mexico Ethics in Business Award in June 2021 on behalf of Adelante.

Almost four months ago, I assumed the role of President/CEO at Adelante. I am thrilled to have the opportunity and wanted to reach out to you — as a client, staff member, guardian, donor, or business customer – to let you know a bit more about me and how we can envision the future of Adelante together.

It is an honor to serve as the President/CEO of this incredible organization. Accepting a job with Adelante over nine years ago was the best decision I could have made. At the time, I was just looking for a job. What I found was a mission I am passionate about, the opportunity to make a difference, and an amazing work family. I am grateful for the Board of Director’s confidence in me, and I am fortunate to be surrounded by an incredible, dedicated, and talented team as we focus on the future of Adelante – Adelante Onward!

I want to take a moment and acknowledge Mike Kivitz and his incredible leadership and the success he achieved in the growth of Adelante, not to mention his contributions in support of people with disabilities. Over a career that spanned more than four decades, his advocacy work in the field is unprecedented. I appreciate his guidance, support, and continued friendship.

You have my commitment that I will serve our clients, our employees, Adelante, and our community to the best of my ability. And I want to thank you for your dedication and commitment to our clients and Adelante every day, and especially during the challenging times we have seen during the last year and a half.

You also have my commitment that I will communicate often and openly with you. I hope to hear often and openly from you as well. I invite the opportunity to hear your thoughts and ideas as we develop our visions for the future. I would like to know what you think Adelante could do differently or better. Ideally, we will have an opportunity to meet in person. For now, please email me any feedback, ideas or comments you would like to share.

Though I have worked at Adelante for many years, I will take some time to learn more about each part of our organization and to further understand the current challenges and opportunities for the future. I look forward to listening and working with you and our leadership team to develop Adelante’s path forward.

As we start this new chapter together, I wanted to share a little bit about me, what inspires me, and what motivates me.

A sunlit path captured by Adelante CEO Rebecca Sanford. Adelante’s CEO is an avid runner who says she often does some of her best thinking during early morning runs.

I am originally from San Francisco, California, and was fortunate to land in New Mexico in 2000. I’ve been married for 13 years to Eric Hokanson. We have three dogs and one horse. When I am not working, I am usually out walking my dogs, riding my horse, or working in the yard. I’m an avid runner and sometimes do my best thinking during early morning runs. I am a firm believer in lifelong learning, and I look forward to learning even more about the work we do from the perspective of this new leadership role and the insights each of you can share with me.

I am inspired by the work our staff members do each and every day, especially our team members working directly with and caring for our clients. I am motivated by the clients, parents, and guardians who push boundaries and are helping the world to become a more inclusive place. And I am grateful for the customers of our Enterprise businesses, the governmental partners we work with, our donors and funders, and the suppliers, vendors, and contractors that keep Adelante functioning with their shared commitment to our mission. Your support is important to us. We could not make a positive impact on so many lives without the many, many people who are part of our Adelante world.

I am guided by the belief that everyone has potential to change the world in a positive way, no matter their situation, age, or disability. We can all make a difference through our work at Adelante. Whatever that job may be, it is a chance to improve lives. I also believe that, through our support and commitment to each other, each of us has a chance to learn and grow personally within this organization. This is the opportunity that awaits us at Adelante.

Adelante has over forty years of success and has had an incredible impact on the lives of people with disabilities, seniors, and disadvantaged populations. We have had a positive impact on tens of thousands of lives in the communities we serve. I am positive we have everything we need to build on that history — amazing employees, creativity, resources, and the desire to make a difference. As the new CEO, I could not ask for a better starting point to move Adelante and our community forward.

With your valuable insights and support, I am excited to build on Adelante’s incredible past to create a vibrant future.

Best regards,

Rebecca Sanford

President/CEO, Adelante