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Meet the Director

Deannah Neswood-Gishey was confirm on May 23, 2019, during the 24th Navajo Nation Council Special Session as the Executive Director of the Navajo Nation Division of Social Services under the Nez-Lizer Administration.

Deannah Neswood-Gishey is originally from Greasewood Springs, Arizona.  She is of the Táchii'nii clan and born for Tsénjikíní.  Her maternal grandfather is of the Tsi'naajíníí clan and paternal grandfather is of the Naaneesht'ézhi Táchii'nii clan.

Prior to her appointment by President Nez and Vice President Lizer, she served as the Program Manager for the Navajo Nation Division of Social Services Department for Self Reliance and previously served as the Director of Tribal Social Services with the Gila River Indian Community.  She is also a veteran of the U.S. National Guard and U.S. Army.

She has a Master of Social Work degree from New Mexico Highlands University, Bachelor of Social Work from Arizona State University, and an Associate of Arts from Mesa Community College.

Her appointment is a prime example of a Navajo Nation employee who worked hard and worked her way up within the Division to reach this point.  Neswood-Gishey has worked with the Division of Social Services as a social worker for 26 years.

Executive Duty

The Executive Director through the Executive Administration Office shall ensure that social (human) services are provided and are consistent with professional social work ethics, values, and in accordance with Navajo cultural values and traditions. The Executive Director shall ensure that the services provided would help to reduce and alleviate hardship and have the ultimate purpose of contributing to Navajo self-sufficiency. The Executive Director shall serve as an advocate for clients, special target groups and develop social services priorities, needs and/or issues.

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