Message and Update From NMCA

Hello All,

Happy New Year! I would like to introduce myself. My name is Arianna Trott, and I am NMCA president for 2023-2024. I was born and raised here in New Mexico. I have spent my professional career working to improve equity and access for behavioral healthcare in New Mexico. As a counselor in New Mexico for the last 10 years, my goal has been to increase community connectedness by providing holistic, culturally informed services through community development, integrated behavioral health services, and patient-centered care.

As NMCA president, I wanted to share what NMCA is working on this year. The first goal we have is to strengthen NMCA and ensure we are an organization for New Mexico counselors by New Mexico counselors. One of our main goals over this year is to focus on strategic planning and review our mission and vision to ensure the longevity and effectiveness of NMCA. We will hold our strategic planning sessions in February and will provide our findings to members when we complete the process.

In 2024, since our focus is strategic planning, we will not be able to have an in-person conference this year. We will continue to offer quarterly virtual CEs including ethics and are planning the annual in-person conference for March 2025. One of our divisions, Counselors for Advocacy and Social Justice (NM CASJ), is also putting on several virtual CE trainings. We hope that these CEs will be beneficial since we will not be able to hold our conference in 2024.


Lastly, we are trying to build our leadership pipeline. As we complete our strategic planning, we will have many opportunities with varying time commitments to contribute to the new mission and vision of NMCA. If you want to get involved, please email us at
Thank you,
Arianna Trott
NMCA President 2023-2024



NMCA is making some structural changes, but we are optimistic that these changes will create more opportunities and assist our profession with bettering and supporting our communities.

What does this mean?

We will continue to have NMCASJ and NMMHCA divisions; these two divisions have calendar events set for this year for members to participate in.

NMCDA is teaming up with NMCCEE to collectively advance in the career counseling field. We want this to be an easy transition, so we are maintaining current NMCDA memberships until they expire and continuing to support NMCDA in future endeavors.

NMSAIGE and NMSERVIC sub-divisions will be dissolved and merged into the main NMCA division, creating a unique opportunity for a Special Interests Group. This group’s goals are not only to support the other Divisions of NMCA but to give back by focusing on important affairs. We hope that creating this Special Interests Group will open opportunities to do more, learn more, and create more. If you are interested in being a part of this movement, contact Heather Smith at

Something amazing resulted from our conference this year! With our Government Relations Chair’s commitment to helping the mental health profession, we now have a committee of mental health professionals like you working towards common goals and ensuring your voice is heard. If you are interested in being part of this committee, it does not require a special membership selection, just email Jeannie Montoya at

2023-2024 NMCA Executive Board

NMCA President- Arianna Trott, LPCC, NCC

NMCA President Elect- Debra Perez PHD, LPCC-S, BCTP-ll, SCPG

NMCA President Elect-Elect- Jeannie Montoya, LPCC

NMCA Past President 2022-2023-Lora Smalley, LMFT

NMCA VP of Professional Development- Janet Birkey, LPCC, LPC-S

Government Relations Chair- Jeannie Montoya, LPCC

Governance Chair- Edith Bermudez, MSC

Membership Committee Chair- La’Quesha Boston, LPCC

Special Interest Chair- Heather Smith, PhD, LPCC, NCC, RDN

Social Media Chair- Emily Miles, LMFT

Executive Director- Kelsi Serrano, LMSW

Executive Assistant- Dayana Sariñana, BA

NMCA Treasurer- Kathleen Charest, MBA, LPCC, NCC, CCHMC

Our Ethics Chair is currently vacant. If this is something that interests you,
please contact the Executive Director at