Author

Shondiin Silversmith

Shondiin Silversmith

Shondiin Silversmith is an award-winning Native journalist based on the Navajo Nation. Silversmith has covered Indigenous communities for more than 10 years, and covers Arizona's 22 federally recognized sovereign tribal nations, as well as national and international Indigenous issues. Her digital, print and audio stories have been published by USA TODAY, The Arizona Republic, Navajo Times, The GroundTruth Project and PRX's "The World." Silversmith earned her master's degree in journalism and mass communication in Boston before moving back to Arizona to continue reporting stories on Indigenous communities. She is a member of the Native American Journalist Association and has made it a priority in her career to advocate, pitch and develop stories surrounding Indigenous communities in the newsrooms she works in.

Federal grants for improving broadband in Indigenous communities now accepting applications

By: - August 17, 2022

Tribal nations can now apply for the 2022 National Tribal Broadband Grant Program to help them develop or extend broadband services within their communities.  “Reliable, high-speed internet access in Tribal communities enables many opportunities for education, employment, entrepreneurship, and social connection,” Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs Bryan Newland said in a press release. “These elements […]

Arizona celebrated its first Navajo Code Talker Day on Sunday

By: - August 14, 2022

Navajo Code Talker Thomas H. Begay stood at the podium dressed in his gold button-up shirt adorned with his service medals and a custom bolo tie made out of his congressional silver medal that is surrounded by turquoise. He wore his red U.S. Marine Corps hat that has Navajo Code Talker embroidered in gold thread […]

Navajo Code Talkers Thomas Begay

Navajo Code Talkers Day Celebration set at the State Capitol for Aug. 14

By: - August 12, 2022

One of the last living Navajo Code Talkers will be speaking in honor of Navajo Code Talkers Day on Aug. 14, marking the 80th anniversary of the Navajo Code Talkers. Navajo Code Talker Thomas H. Begay, 98, is coming to Phoenix with his family from Albuquerque, N.M., to share his experience serving in the U.S. […]

‘It’s starting our healing process’: Navajo family of murdered woman seeks justice

By: - August 12, 2022

Wearing all black, a picture of Jamie Lynette Yazzie on her shirt the only color in her outfit, Marilene James, stepped up to the podium inside a packed federal courtroom in Flagstaff to give a victim statement on behalf of her niece’s family. “Tre James didn’t give my daughter a chance to enjoy life with […]

Navajo Nation presidential candidates Nez and Nygren announce their VP running mates

By: - August 9, 2022

The ballot for Navajo Nation president is set, as incumbent Jonathan Nez and challenger Buu Nygren both announced their vice presidential running mates on Monday. Both campaigns hosted events at the Navajo Veterans Memorial Park in Window Rock, Ariz., on Monday to let Navajo voters know who their running mates will be.  Candidates only have […]

In legislative races, progressive victories spur excitement and anticipation

By: - August 8, 2022

Anna Hernandez in some ways stands as a shining example of where the Democratic Party stands in 2022 — and what its future holds. A candidate for Senate in District 24, which includes Maryvale and a large portion of Glendale, Hernandez toppled incumbent state Rep. César Chávez in this month’s primary election.  “This is what […]

Navajo voters decide on Jonathan Nez, Buu Nygren as the top presidential candidates

By: - August 3, 2022

Voters on the Navajo Nation have narrowed down their presidential candidates from 15 to the two who will square off in November: incumbent Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez and first-time presidential candidate Buu Nygren. All 110 chapters reported unofficial results after midnight on Aug. 3, and results show Nez got 17,073 votes and Nygren got […]

Navajo Code Talker Samuel Sandoval dies at 98; only 3 Navajo Code Talkers remain

By: - August 2, 2022

One of the few remaining Navajo Code Talkers, Samuel Sandoval, died at the age of 98. “Sam was a great warrior. (He) served his country well; especially using the top secret Navajo Code,” Navajo Code Talker and Navajo Code Talker Association President Peter MacDonald said in a text message to The Arizona Mirror.  “He wanted […]

Two Arizona tribal colleges will receive grants to improve internet access for students

By: - July 29, 2022

Diné College and the Tohono O’odham Community College received multi-million-dollar grants to support their efforts to improve educational and economic opportunity within their tribal communities by improving internet access, providing more hardware and investing in information technology personnel. “We knew that we had to extend our services beyond our campuses and centers to the Navajo […]

Final steps to remove derogatory names from federal lands underway

By: - July 27, 2022

Sixty-six of the 67 sites on federal land in Arizona with a name that includes a slur for Native American women are slated to be renamed in September. With the public comment period now over, the U.S. Department of Interior is in the final stages of renaming more than 660 geographic features with the word […]

Funding available for the Navajo Nation and states for abandoned mine lands projects

By: - July 21, 2022

More than 20 states and the Navajo Nation can now apply for $725 million in funding for abandoned mine lands projects to help communities that have suffered environmental hazards and pollution caused by coal mining.  “Through this program, we are investing in coal communities through job creation — including for current and former coal workers […]

Arizona broadband expansion projects are getting a $100 million infusion of cash

By: - July 18, 2022

Nearly two dozen broadband projects in 12 Arizona counties received funding as part of the state’s plan to spend $100 million in federal money expanding high-speed internet access in underserved areas. “These collaborative projects will enhance how Arizonans live, work, and learn regardless of where they live,” Arizona Commerce Authority President & CEO Sandra Watson […]