Navajo-Hopi Nations,Flagstaff & Winslow News
Sat, Sept. 19

Three to be honored at Native American Bar Association's annual awards dinner
Denetsosie, Zah and Arnold will be recognized Sept. 29

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. - The Native American Bar Association of Arizona (NABA-AZ) will honor Louis Denetsosie, the former attorney general of the Navajo Nation, who will receive NABA-AZ's Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of his many contributions to the practice of Indian law, and Linda (Benally) Arnold, NABA-AZ's outgoing president, who will receive its Member of the Year in recognition of her tireless work for the organization. Finally, NABA-AZ will award its Seventh Generation Community Award to Dr. Peterson Zah, the former president of the Navajo Nation, for his many contributions to Native communities throughout Arizona.

The award ceremony will cap this year's Seven Generations Award Dinner and Silent Auction on Sept. 29 at the Fort McDowell Radisson Resort and Conference Center in the Fort McDowell Yavapai Indian community. NABA-AZ is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting the development of Native American attorneys and advancing and improving the practice of Indian law in Arizona.

The Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes and honors an attorney who has made a substantial contribution in the field of Indian law in the state of Arizona over the course of their professional career. Denetsosie is currently the vice president and general counsel for Navajo Nation Oil and Gas Company and the former Navajo Nation Attorney General. Denetsosie's work in the Native American and legal community over the years has been immeasurable. He was one of the first Native American attorneys to be licensed to practice law in the state of Arizona, and through his leadership and dedication, Denetsosie has inspired many other Native Americans to pursue legal careers in Arizona and throughout the country.

The Seventh Generation Community Award recognizes and honors individuals or groups that make a lasting impact on Native communities throughout Arizona. Zah is a founder of Restore Harmony, a nonprofit organization whose purpose is to restore trust, peace, harmony and the beauty way of life among the Diné.

Zah helped improve the lives of many Native families over the course of his years of service as the executive director of DNA People's Legal Service. Zah was the first executive director of DNA and was instrumental in its incorporation as a nonprofit entity that provides access to high quality legal services to Native Americans on the Navajo Reservation. Zah also worked tirelessly to expand ASU's commitment to the education of Native Americans having served as the special adviser to ASU President Michael Crow on American Indian affairs from 1995-2010. He was the first president of the Navajo Nation and the last chairman of the Navajo Nation.

The Member of the Year Award is given to a member with a significant history of service and dedication to NABA-AZ and its goals. Arnold, a citizen of the Diné Nation from Shiprock, N.M., is a corporate attorney for Arizona Public Service Company. She is being honored for elevating NABA-AZ's profile within the Arizona legal community and for her generous volunteerism, energy and selflessness.

Arnold advises clients on transmission line sitting matters and appears before the Arizona Corporation Commission. She also serves as APS's Manager of Community Development working with Indian Nations in the state of Arizona. Arnold is a founding member and the current president of the Native American Bar Association of Arizona and the secretary of the National Native American Bar Association. She serves on numerous boards in the metro-Phoenix area working to advance the interests of Native Americans and is the immediate past president of the Board of Directors of the Phoenix Indian Center, Inc.

Tickets are $125 per person and sponsorship opportunities are available. For tickets, sponsorships and donations, contact Sonia Martinez with the Law Office of Sonia Martinez by calling (480) 352-5886 or email

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