DONA ANA COUNTY, N.M. (KFOX14_ — Dona Ana Sheriff Enrique “Kiki” Vigil has appointed the first woman undersheriff in Dona Ana County history.
Liliana McDowell-Schnell will begin her duties as undersheriff Monday, according to Kelly Jameson, spokeswoman for the Dona Ana County Sheriff’s Office.
She is currently the Otero County undersherriff and has been there since 2016.
Prior to working in Otero County, she retired from the FBI, where she worked extensively in civil rights and human trafficking investigations. McDowell-Schnell also worked as a crisis negotiator in the El Paso and Albuquerque divisions of the FBI for 18 years, Jameson said.
“I am excited to have Liliana on board,” Vigil said. “Her leadership in civil rights and crisis prevention will greatly benefit our border county. Her remarkable career, experience and leadership with the FBI and her work with the DEA, ATF and IRS will bring a wealth of knowledge to our office that will serve the residents of Doña Ana County well.”
“Working in Doña Ana County is like coming home,” McDowell-Schnell said. “I worked with many DASO employees while I was with the Bureau. I have great respect and affection for them and the department.”
She was born in Guadalajara, Mexico, and is a graduate of UTEP.
McDowell-Schnell is replacing Ken Roberts, who was fired in January after he was accused of sexual harassment.