The Compliance, Ethics & Equal Opportunity Office and the UNM Health and Health Sciences Compliance Office annually recognizes individuals across the UNM enterprise who dedicate their work to Advancing Compliance and Ethics and creating a better UNM. The ACE (Advancing Compliance and Ethics) award is presented to individuals who enhance and promote a healthy, ethical, and compliant working and learning environment at UNM.

The 2023 recipients, including Victor Griego, Carolyn Montoya, Mei-Lee Palmer and Dawn Harrington, will be celebrated Tuesday, Nov. 7 from 4 to 6 p.m. at the University Club located at 1923 Las Lomas, NE. Please join CEEO in congratulating the recipients.

The ACE 2023 recipients:

Victor ACE
Victor Griego

Victor Griego – director, Internal Audit
As the director of UNM’s Internal Audit Department, Victor Griego is at the cornerstone of UNM’s commitment to ethical and compliant behavior. A native New Mexican from Mora, Griego joined UNM in 2012 as an internal auditor. In 2021, Griego was named director of Internal Audit following a nationwide search. In his current role, Griego is involved in all audits conducted by his office and advises University administrators, including the President and Regents, on best practices and audit results.

When not hard at work in his own department, Griego collaborates with other UNM compliance partners to conduct risk assessments and joint investigations and provides guidance and support in policy and operational development to UNM stakeholders. He also co-administers the UNM Compliance Hotline.

Griego is always quick to smile and brings a positive and transparent work approach to the internal audit role.

Montoya ACE
Carolyn Montoya

Carolyn Montoya, Interim Dean – School of Nursing
Carolyn Jaramillo Montoya, Ph.D., clinician educator and professor, is the interim dean at The University of New Mexico College of Nursing. Montoya served as president of the New Mexico Nurse Practitioner Council, where she worked to achieve successful passage of legislation resulting in full prescriptive authority and independent practice for nurse practitioners in New Mexico.

She has also served as president of the American College of Nurse Practitioners, advocating for full-scope practice for all states, and president of the National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners, where she advocated for improving the health of children and families, The field of compliance and ethics in healthcare, including academic medical centers, is complex.

Montoya understands and promotes the importance of ethics and compliance to the faculty and staff of UNM Health Sciences. Her unwavering support and collaboration empower the message of compliance and ethics to thrive for the benefit of UNM.

Palmer ACE
Mei-Lee Palmer

Mei-Lee Palmer, Labor and Employee Relations Officer – Human Resources
Mei-Lee Palmer serves as the Labor and Employee Relations Officer in the Division of Human Resources (HR), overseeing both employee relations and labor relation matters for staff employees. Palmer brings a wealth of knowledge to her role at the University, with over 20 years of professional human resources experience. Palmer has been with UNM for over 7 years where her specialized knowledge and expertise have resulted in successfully investigating staff concerns and establishing productive working relationships with union representatives, ultimately leading to successful bargaining and agreement on critical union matters. 

Palmer oversees a team of professional staff, providing leadership and guidance on reviews and recommendations of staff complaints and she is a key contributor to the management team. Mei-Lee actively partners with other investigatory departments on shared jurisdiction matters, providing consistency and alignment on joint cases. Palmer‘s expertise and contributions play a key role in UNM’s ability to effectively support both departments and employees across campus.

Harrington ACE
Dawn Harrington

Dawn Harrington, Chief Information Officer – UNM Health and Health Sciences
In today’s complex technologically advanced environment, coupled with our dependency on a variety of information systems to complete our daily tasks, the unwavering leadership of Dawn Harrington, Chief Information Officer for UNM Health and Health Sciences, is of paramount and crucial importance. Harrington ensures our Information Technology (IT) systems are protected from both internal and external threats and for developing and implementing IT policies, procedures and best practices that ensure our IT systems are not compromised and operate in a compliant and ethical manner.

Harrington serves on several Compliance Committees including The UNM Health and Health Sciences Executive Compliance Committee, The UNM Health System Compliance Committee and The UNM Health Sciences Compliance Committee. Her contributions and insight as a member of these Committees is invaluable and serve to promote and further enhance a greater understanding of compliance and ethics to her staff and to all employees who work at UNM Health and Health Sciences.