GRAND CANYON, AZ – Arizona tribal leaders and Arizona Governor Katie Hobbs recently convened to foster meaningful dialogue about Arizona’s economic development. The goal was to address mutual interests and explore opportunities for responsible tourism and other initiatives that benefit tribal communities and the state.
“It’s important for us to have these conversations about how best to foster growth and sustainability concerning tourism and economic development while safeguarding Arizona’s cultural institutions and natural resources,” said Governor Hobbs. “Having diverse voices come together to share their perspectives on the issues that impact all of us is a valuable exercise in exploring solutions and opportunities.”
“In hosting Arizona’s leadership at the convening, we strengthen our tribal and state partnerships and build a shared vision for responsible and sustainable economic development and tourism,” said Ed Keable, Superintendent of Grand Canyon National Park. “It is wonderful to see so many leaders focused on how best to preserve and protect our state while sharing all that Arizona has to offer with visitors.”
At the convening, participants heard from representatives of the National Park Service and Grand Canyon Conservancy about their initiatives to preserve cultural heritage at the Grand Canyon. Tribal leaders shared their top priorities and projects. Attendees toured Desert View Inter-tribal Cultural Heritage Site, the only one of its kind located at a national park. At the site, 11 tribes traditionally associated with the Grand Canyon region raise awareness and appreciation of the history and diverse cultures of the area.
At the convening, a blessing was offered by Dianna Sue Uqualla (Havasupai Tribe). In addition to Governor Hobbs and Superintendent Keable, speakers included Jason Chavez, Director of the Governor’s Office of Tribal Affairs; Theresa McMullan, CEO of Grand Canyon Conservancy; Lisa Urias, Director of the Arizona Office of Tourism; and Jackie Johnson, Director of the Arizona Department of Gaming. Jason Coochwytewa, Grand Canyon Conservancy board member, provided a welcome statement and introduction of tribal leaders and guests.