Gregory A. McKay is a twenty-year veteran of Law Enforcement with an emphasis on criminal investigations of violent crime. He was awarded Arizona's Investigator of the Year for solving many high-profile child murder cases. As a former Arizona foster parent, he understands the lasting emotional and physical effects of abuse to a child. In 2013, he was awarded Childhelp USA’s Heart of an Angel Award, recognizing his distinguished career in child advocacy, investigative expertise, and removal of child predators. McKay was appointed Director of DCS by Governor Douglas A. Ducey on February 10, 2015.
Director McKay has led several breakthrough initiatives for the department. Under his leadership, DCS has successfully completed the backlog of uninvestigated cases that had plagued the department for years. The department also safely reduced the number of children in state foster care by 25%, thus reversing a ten-year growth trend of 92%. By eliminating hotline hold times, reducing staff caseloads, decreasing congregate care and increasing family and community engagement in the service of the state’s most vulnerable children, the state is poised to meet Director McKay’s goal of making Arizona the safest place in the country for children to grow and thrive. In 2018, Director McKay received the Justice for All award from Maricopa County, the Excellence for Children Award for Exceptional Leadership from Casey Family Programs and the Childhelp Voice of Children Congressional Award.