Vice President Lizer speaks about economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic during the 11th Annual Navajo Nation Business Opportunity Day
WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. – Navajo Nation Vice President Myron Lizer provided the welcome address during the 11th Annual Navajo Nation Business Opportunity Day. The event was hosted by the Navajo Nation Division of Economic Development, in partnership with the National Center American Indian Procurement Technical Assistance Center, and focused on “Recovery and Revitalization After COVID.”
This year’s event was held virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and brought together small business owners, entrepreneurs, and representatives from the Dineh Chamber of Commerce, the U.S. Small Business Administration, and others who are focused on helping to grow the Navajo Nation economy by increasing the number of Navajo small businesses by providing needed support and resources.
“I’m very optimistic that as we emerge from this pandemic, unique opportunities to advance needed reforms in a variety of different areas that will strengthen our sovereign Nation and benefit the people now, and in the future, will also emerge. We must demonstrate our resolve, while establishing our position as Indian Country’s leader in education, protecting our environment, creating a resilient economy, and ensuring public safety. To our Dine’ citizens of the Navajo Nation, I pledge to stand with you as we work to rebuild your communities stronger than before. We need policy solutions that level the playing field, by acknowledging and addressing the unique barriers to basic health and financial resources that impede our communities from accessing meaningful opportunities to prosper in the 21st Century,” said Vice President Lizer.
He also spoke about the need for the Navajo Nation to become more fiscally conservative, to advocate for cutting federal/tribal regulations to reassure that Navajo families benefit economically for generations to come, and to create more investments in transportation and infrastructure, as well as using resources to ensure continuous job growth, work force training, affordable housing and rural economic development.
Vice President Lizer stated that the recent in temporary federal aid is a great starting point to help the Nation’s economic recovery, but that more attention to certain industries is needed to help people and businesses who are facing an uphill battle for the foreseeable future.
“If we support our very own Navajo higher educational system, as well as the reforms needed to improve educational opportunities across the Nation, we will see more Navajo entrepreneurs and more innovation. Let’s support the continued ascent of our Navajo higher education so that these future industries can grow by employing our own Navajo graduates in good, high-paying jobs in our business-friendly environment. Like many times throughout history, our Navajo people have displayed remarkable resilience in the face of unimaginable obstacles. Our Nation will not be built in days, weeks, or months, but it will be built through the teachings of our people such as, T'áá hwó ají t'éego. We have much greatness before us. We can restore our economic strength and develop opportunities like none we’ve ever had before,” added Vice President Lizer.
The event also consisted of a general session, nine breakout learning sessions and business matchmaking. Other guest speakers included National Center American Indian Procurement Technical Assistance Center Board of Directors Chairman Derrick Watchman, Dineh Chamber of Commerce Interim Chair Lydelle Davies, and others.
The Navajo Nation Office of the President and Vice President express their appreciation to the Navajo Nation Division of Economic Development, National Center American Indian Procurement Technical Assistance Center (AI-PTAC), Dineh Chamber of Commerce, and Salt River Project for sponsoring this year’s event.