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Official Press Release: Native American Connections Celebrates its 50th Anniversary
Posted on Nov 22, 2022

Official Press Release: Native American Connections Celebrates its 50th Anniversary

Thank you to our friends, family, and community for showing up to commemorate this milestone event! Read NAC's official press release regarding our celebration.

Native American Connections Celebrates its 50th Anniversary: CEO Diana “Dede” Yazzie Devine was also honored on her retirement


Phoenix, Ariz. – Native American Connections (NAC) commemorated 50 years of providing culturally appropriate health, housing and community development services to individuals and families with a celebration at The Phoenix Indian School Visitor Center, on Friday, November 18. At the reception, NAC honored CEO Diana “Dede” Yazzie Devine on the occasion of her retirement from the organization after 43 years of service.

“I have been honored to serve Native American Connections as CEO for 43 of its 50 years. During that time, we have worked hard at changing lives, strengthening families, and building healthy communities throughout Arizona,” said Yazzie Devine. “I’m looking forward to retirement and spending time with my family, especially my grandchildren. I am confident that NAC will continue its tradition of service for another 50 years.”

NAC has grown from a grassroots organization helping Native American men in recovery from substance use disorders to a Native American-operated non-profit that touches the lives of more than 10,000 individuals and families each year with comprehensive behavioral health and integrated medical services, affordable housing, and community-based economic development opportunities.

As CEO, Yazzie Devine has worked to educate the public about the history of the Native American community in Phoenix. During her 43-year tenure, she has helped NAC grow to include more than 1200 units of affordable housing for working families and permanent supportive housing for homeless individuals, impacting countless lives in the urban Native American community.

About Native American Connections
Native American Connections has been healing individuals, changing lives, and strengthening communities since 1972. We integrate Native American healing with evidence-based practices to support health and wellness, provide affordable housing, and champion community development projects. We are a leader in developing, building, and managing advanced behavioral health and state-of-the-art housing communities, and own and operate 21 sites throughout Central Phoenix. Our services are open to all, and we touch the lives of more than 10,000 individuals and families each year.

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A "chronically homeless" individual is defined to mean a homeless individual with a disability who lives either in a place not meant for human habitation, a safe haven, or in an emergency shelter or in an institutional care facility if the individual has been living in the facility for fewer than ninety (90) days and had been living in a place not meant for human habitation, a safe haven or in an emergency shelter immediately before entering the institutional care facility. In order to meet the ‘‘chronically homeless’’ definition, the individual also must have been living as described above continuously for at least twelve (12) months or on at least four (4) separate occasions in the last three (3) years, where the combined occasions total a length of time of at least twelve (12) months. Each period separating the occasions must include at least seven (7) nights of living in a situation other than a place not meant for human habitation, in an emergency shelter or in a safe haven.

Federal nondiscrimination laws define a person with a disability to include any (1) individual with a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities; (2) individual with a record of such impairment; or (3) individual who is regarded as having such an impairment. In general, a physical or mental impairment includes, but is not limited to, examples of conditions such as orthopedic, visual, speech and hearing impairments, cerebral palsy, autism, epilepsy, muscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis, cancer, heart disease, diabetes, Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), developmental disabilities, mental illness, drug addiction, and alcoholism.