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Virgil Masayesva's Biography

Virgil Masayesva was co-founder of the Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals (ITEP) at Northern Arizona University, and actively involved in the development of ITEP's tribal air quality training programs, including the American Indian Air Quality Training Program, the Tribal Air Monitoring Support Center and many other programs dedicated to the protection and preservation of tribal cultures and sovereignty.

Virgil receiving the Micheal Frost Award   At ITEP's 10th Anniversary   Classroom presentation

A graduate of both the University of Arizona (B.S.) and Arizona State University, Virgil received his Masters degree in Public Administration with an emphasis in regional planning, and has also completed post-graduate studies in public health policy while at Arizona State. He devoted his professional career to working with Indian tribes on various policy and development issues related to education, health, economic development and the environment. He received national and international recognition for his leadership and outstanding contributions to Native peoples and the protection of indigenous cultures.

Born in 1948 in Hotevilla, Arizona, Mr. Masayesva was a member of the Hopi Tribe and a decorated Vietnam veteran. From 1990 to 1992, he served as special assistant to then-NAU President Eugene Hughes. He also served as Acting Director and Program Director for the Hopi Tribe from 1974 to 1976. Prior to his employment at NAU, Mr. Masayesva worked with Phoenix Area Indian Health Service, Indian Development District of Arizona, Inc., ACKCO, Inc, and the Arizona Commission on Indian Affairs.


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Last updated: February 26, 2010