Luis A. Cruz-Arroyo joined the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Caribbean Area as its new director on Oct. 28. He is from Mayagüez, Puerto Rico and has graduated from the University of Puerto Rico with a bachelor’s degree in animal science.
Cruz-Arroyo began his professional career at Pioneer Seedlings, and he provided consultation services for an environmental firm on by-product management for agricultural uses.
In 2010, he began his career with USDA-NRCS as a soil conservationist in Baldwin County, Ala., and he continued his career as a district conservationist in several counties in Alabama. In 2013, he assumed the Area Resource Conservationist position in the West Area of Alabama; the chair of the Civil Rights Advisory Committee; Alabama’s Hispanic Special Emphasis program manager; and the Southeastern Region representative for the National Organization of Professional Hispanic NRCS Employees.
He was appointed as Alabama’s StrikeForce Coordinator in 2016 as a collateral duty, where he worked with other USDA agencies to coordinate outreach efforts to target and improve program participation in counties with persistent poverty.
Other positions he has filled include assistant state conservationist for Field Operations in Northwest Iowa; NRCS Caribbean Area Emergency Watershed Protection Program coordinator in the aftermath of hurricanes Irma and María; Alabama’s StrikeForce Coordinator in 2016;
He enjoys woodworking on his spare time and looks forward to spending afternoons at the beach with his daughters, Olivia and Ariana, his wife, Erika, and his dog, Kobe.
Luis A. Cruz-Arroyo can be contacted at the NRCS Caribbean Area State Office, 654 Muñoz Rivera Ave., Suite 604, Hato Rey, PR 00918-4123; 787-766-5206 or firstname.lastname@example.org.