ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – As Mayor Richard Berry prepares to leave office, the city’s next leader gets ready to step into his new role.
Tim Keller will become Albuquerque’s next mayor after he beat out Dan Lewis during the run-off election. Keller will be Albuquerque’s 10th mayor since 1974 when the City changed from the Manager/Commission to a Mayor/Council form of government.
After his win, Keller talked about taking responsibility for the city’s issues and helping fix the problems.
One of his big campaign promises was to fight crime in the city and focus on community policing.
Post-election, he called the Albuquerque Police Department one of his top priorities and didn’t wait to appoint an interim chief of police.
Twenty-year APD veteran and former Rio Rancho Police Chief Michael Geier was appointed Tuesday. Keller says a national search is planned for a permanent police chief and the long-term goals will be reducing crime, restoring public trust and hiring more officers.
Keller has also already named some of his executives. A few of them are leaving the State Auditor’s Office to join Keller at City Hall.
In the last day, he has named Lawrence Rael as the city’s interim chief operating officer.
This was a quick transition for Keller, who had just days to step into his new role, usually something that takes about two months. The run-off election forced things to speed up.
Tim Keller will have a public swearing-in Friday evening at the Albuquerque Convention Center.
Five city councilors will also be sworn in including newly elected Cynthia Borrego in District 5.