Key appointments for Nez-Lizer administration announced; await confirmation by council
WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. — On Jan. 15, Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez and Vice President Myron Lizer announced their administration.
The following statement was issued from the Nez-Lizer administration:
"The day after we were elected into office, we established a strong and diverse transition team to evaluate and assess potential candidates to serve in the highest positions for the Navajo Nation. We had approximately 200 applicants across the country, many of which wanted to come home and serve our Nation.
We assessed their academic and professional accomplishments and experience, but most importantly we examined their character and their passion to help our people and our Nation. We are truly grateful to everyone who showed interest in working for our administration.
The following appointees will soon become an official part of the Nez-Lizer Administration. We are proud to say that we have our team in place, and that we are ready to get to work to bring change to the Navajo Nation."
Chief of Staff – Paulson Chaco
Chaco will serve as the Chief of Staff for the Navajo Nation Office of the President and Vice President for the Nez-Lizer Administration. Mr. Chaco previously served the Navajo Nation as the executive director for the Navajo Nation Division of Transportation.
Attorney General – Doreen Nanibaa McPaul
After serving many years in high-level attorney positions with various tribes, private law firms, the administration announced they are bringing home one one of their own, Doreen Nanibaa McPaul. She earned a Bachelors of Arts in English at Princeton University in 1995 and a Juris Doctorate from Arizona State University in 2001.
Since 2017, Doreen Nanibaa McPaul has served as the assistant Attorney General for the Pascua Yaqui Tribe in Tucson, Arizona. She previously served as special counsel to the chairman and vice chairman of the Tohono O’odham Nation, assistant Attorney General for the Tohono O’odham Nation.
McPaul is licensed to practice in the Courts of the Tohono O’odham Nation, the Pueblos of Taos and San Ildefonso, Ak-Chin Indian Community, and Gila River Indian Community.
Department of Health – Dr. Jill Jim
Jim, an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation and fluent Navajo speaker, will be coming home to the Navajo Nation from Albuquerque, N.M. to serve as the executive director for the Navajo Nation Department of Health.
Jim has a Doctorate in Public Health from the University of Utah, a Master’s Degree in Health Care Administration and Public Health from the University of Utah, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Health Promotion and Community Health Education from Northern Arizona University.
Some of her work experience includes serving as a Health Care Analyst for HealthInsight in Albuquerque, N.M., consultant for Navajo Area Indian Health Service, and Epidemiologist for the Utah Department of Health.
Division of Community Development – Dr. Pearl Yellowman
Pearl Yellowman will serve as the executive director of the Navajo Nation Division of Community Development.
Yellowman has 20 years of experience serving tribal communities in the areas of implementation, funding source requirements, supervision, data collection, trainings and compliance. In addition, her experience is supplemented with extensive education. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work, a Master’s in Education, a second Master’s in Counseling and a Doctorate in Education from the University of Montana.
Division of Economic Development – JT Willie
Willie, a fluent Navajo speaker, will serve the Nez-Lizer Administration as the Executive Director for the Navajo Nation Division of Economic Development. Mr. Willie earned a Master’s Degree in Public Administration in 2014 and Bachelors of Business Administration in 2008, from the University of New Mexico.
He has extensive marketing experiencing as former director of Marketing for the Navajo Arts and Crafts Enterprise and as the director of Marketing for the Tséhootsooi Medical Center in Fort Defiance, Arizona.
Division of Public Safety – Jesse Delmar
Delmar, fluent Navajo speaker, will continue building on the success that he and many others have worked hard for in the last several years, as the executive director of the Navajo Nation Division of Public Safety.
Delmar has a Bachelor’s Degree in Administration of Criminal Justice with a Minor in Psychology from Northern Arizona University. He previously served as the head of public safety for the Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation and offers a vast knowledge and extensive public safety experience.
Washington Office – Santee Lewis
Santee Lewis will take on the role as executive director of the Navajo Nation Washington Office. She has a Master of Business Administration and a Juris Doctorate from the University of New Mexico.
She has exceptional experience working with the federal government as the previous deputy superintendent for the Eastern Navajo Agency under the U.S. Department of the Interior as a Senior Advisor for the Federal Land Buy Back Program.
Division of General Services – Lomardo Aseret
Aseret brings many years of experience as the new director of the Navajo Nation Division of General Services. He has Master’s Degree in Public Administration from Northern Arizona University and a Bachelor’s of Science in Business Management.
For many years, Aseret has worked with Salt River Project in various capacities including management and supervisor positions.
Division of Human Resouces – Dr. Perphelia Fowler
Fowler, a fluent Navajo speaker, will join the administration to serve as the Executive director of the Navajo Nation Division of Human Resources. Fowler has extensive human resources expertise and serves as the Human Resources director at Navajo Technical University in Crownpoint, New Mexico. She previously served in various human resources positions with the Red Mesa Unified School District and Diné College.
She earned a Doctorate Degree in Educational Leadership for Change from Fielding Graduate University, in Santa Barbara, California, Master’s Degree in Human Resources- Business Administration, and Bachelor’s Degree in Human Resources-Business Administration.
Environmental Protection Agency – Oliver Whaley
Whaley will serve as the executive director for the Navajo Nation Division of Natural Resources. He has a Juris Doctorate from the J. Reuben Clark Law School at Brigham Young University, a Masters of Public Administration from Southern Utah University, and a Bachelor of Science in Exercise and Wellness from BYU.
He serves as an attorney with the Navajo Nation Department of Justice’s Natural Resources Unit. Prior to joining the Navajo Nation Department of Justice, he served as a lawyer with Hadley-Whaley law firm and gained valuable experience with the Utah Court of Appeals.
Navajo-Hopi Land Commission Office – Robert K. Black, Jr.
Black, Jr., a fluent Navajo speaker and longtime resident of the Western Navajo Agency, will take on the task of executive director of the Navajo-Hopi Land Commission Office. He serves as the governance manager for the Shonto Community Governance/Chapter and offers extensive knowledge of the Former Bennett Freeze Area.
Division of Natural Resources – Dr. Rudy R. Shebala
Shebala will serve as the executive director of the Navajo Nation Division of Natural Resources. He has an extensive academic background, which includes a Master’s Degree and Doctorate in Environmental Science from the University of Idaho, and a Bachelor of Science in Animal Science.
Editor's Note: Many of these positions require confirmation by the Navajo Nation Council.