HUD Archives: News Releases

HUD No. 10-227
Jereon Brown
(202) 402-6628
For Release
October 7, 2010


WASHINGTON - U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan today announced President Barack Obama's selection of Derrith Watchman-Moore to serve as HUD's Regional Administrator for four Great Plains states including Kansas, Missouri, Iowa, and Nebraska.

Watchman-Moore will serve as HUD's liaison to mayors, city managers, elected representatives, state and local officials, congressional delegations, stakeholders and customers. She will be responsible for overseeing the delivery of HUD programs and services to communities, as well as evaluating their efficiency and effectiveness.

"Derrith is an extremely knowledgeable, passionate advocate for the environment, community building and working with people from underserved communities," said Secretary Donovan. "She is a well-respected leader who has strong ties to business, labor, educational institutions and she knows how to motivate people to get things done. Her experience will be a tremendous addition to our leadership team as we work to deliver numerous housing and sustainability initiatives."

Watchman-Moore said, "I have always felt that my role in life was to bring more people to the table, especially the underserved and those from rural communities. I believe that HUD is an agency where I can help the Obama Administration to make a daily difference in those lives and communities."

Most recently, Watchman-Moore served as the Chief Operating Officer for the Navajo Housing Authority. There she oversaw and helped refine work flow processes for housing development, construction and management of 8000 public housing units on the Navajo Nation. She also worked to change new housing designs and improve infrastructure planning processes toward energy efficiency, green building, conservation, Navajo cultural relevancy, and affordability needs.

Prior to coming to the Navajo Housing Authority, Watchman-Moore was appointed as Deputy Cabinet Secretary and Senior Policy Advisor for New Mexico's Environment Department. While there, she designed a public information gathering award winning process on Environmental Justice with continuing executive leadership toward enhancement of public participation in Government decision making. She also developed policy recommendations regarding energy and uranium development, environmental justice, and potential environmental impacts in New Mexico rural and tribal communities.

In 2004, Watchman-Moore temporarily was appointed to the position of Secretary of New Mexico's Department of Indian Affairs, becoming the first woman to ever hold the position. Ms. Watchman-Moore has held numerous other senior policy positions including serving as the chief of staff to the president of the Navajo Nation.

Her involvement with environmental issues from the perspectives of tribes and private industry also includes working as an environmental and safety engineer for Packard-Hughes Interconnect, a General Motors subsidiary, and serving as Deputy Director and Superfund Program Manager for the Pueblo Office of Environmental Protection.

Watchman-Moore, a member of the Navajo Nation, credits her commitment to public and community service to the inspiration of her father, the late, long serving New Mexico state representative, Leo Watchman Sr. who was first elected in the mid 60's.

"On a daily basis, my father instilled in us that we must give back to the community. I am committed to meeting his standards and instilling that giving trait in my family and others," said Watchman-Moore.

Watchman-Moore life achievements are as remarkable as her work achievements. "One of the my proudest moments has been coaching the Navajo Pine Lady Warriors to the Class 2A state championship basketball game for the first time in school history. That journey meant the world to me and the young women on that team."

Watchman-Moore, a native of Crystal, New Mexico, is married to Henry, a police lieutenant and the two have five children.

She earned her undergraduate degree from Colorado State University in Fort Collins and her MBA from the University of Phoenix in Albuquerque, New Mexico.


HUD's mission is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. HUD is working to strengthen the housing market to bolster the economy and protect consumers; meet the need for quality affordable rental homes: utilize housing as a platform for improving quality of life; build inclusive and sustainable communities free from discrimination; and transform the way HUD does business. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet at and


Content Archived: June 9, 2017