Cerletti, who had managed several Santa Fe hotels. was New Mexico’s first tourism secretary, appointed in 1991 by Gov. Bruce King. Gov. Bill Richardson brought him back to that job during his first term. He served until the end of the Richardson administration in 2010.
Richardson in a written statement said:
Mike Cerletti was a great promoter of New Mexico and the best Tourism Secretary the State ever had. He was also a true friend who never wavered in his loyalty and dedication to the values of honesty and decency that he championed. He leaves a huge void. His wife Helen was always at his side and thousands of Mikes friends throughout the state and country wish her the very best.
I first got to know Cerletti back in the 1980s when he managed La Posada and became a member of the city's Occupational Tax Advisory Board. He always was friendly and had a good sense of humor even in those rare times he'd call to argue about something I wrote that he didn't like. Cerletti was a true gentleman
Cerletti's funeral mass will be celebrated at 10 a.m on Jan. 13 at the St. Francis Cathedral Basilica.