Nation’s only American Indian disability summit planned March 29 in Phoenix

The country’s only American Indian Disability Summit, under the theme “Gathering Native Voices to Address Collective Trauma” will be held 8:30-4 p.m.Friday, March 29 at the Desert Willow Conference Center, 4340 E. Cotton Center Blvd. in Phoenix.

The 15th annual summit brings together state, federal, non-profit and tribal partnerships to provide resources and services to American Indians with disabilities and their families.

Among the keynote speakers are:

  • Thomasine LaPointe (Rosebud Sioux), Traditional Cultural Advisor, who will address Tribal Youth, Minimizing Trauma After Out-of-Home Placement.
  • Tona TreeTop (Standing Rock Sioux), who will lead a youth workshop with the theme “Navigating Trauma with Cultural Empowerment – Creating a Trauma Action Plan.”
  • Tyesha Wood, National Criminal Justice Training Center, who will discuss “Human Trafficking in Indian Country.”
  • Terry McDermott, National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Valley of the Sun, who will discuss “Living with Mental Illness.”
  • Archie Mariano, Tribal Nations Instructor Liaison with the Arizona Department of Economic Security, who will discuss “Strengthening Partnership and Collaboration with the 22 Tribal Nations in Arizona.”
  • Debra Krol (Xolon Salinan), the 2019 Summit Keynote Speaker, who will present “Reporting on Indian Country – How Practitioners Can Help Indigenous Journalists Tell Their Stories.”

Anya Corozo (Hopi/Lakota/Pueblo) will receive the 2019 Marcus Harrison Leadership Award.

Individual on-line registration is $10.  Exhibitor table fees are $450 for profit, $350 for non-profit and government agencies and $125 for arts and craft vendors. Exhibitor fees include registration for two people with a $75 fee for each additional person.

To register online, visit

For additional information contact Rosalie Perry 602-443-0707 (1-800-280-2245 x707 to leave a message), Dorothy Goeman 480-415-3853 or Betty Schoen 602-532-6282.  The summit is open to the public.

The event is hosted by Ability360, formerly Arizona Bridge to Independent Living. Ability360offers and promotes programs to empower people with disabilities to take personal responsibility so that they may achieve or continue independent lifestyles within the community.

Ability360is located at 5025 E. Washington St. Ste. 200, Phoenix, AZ 85034,, 602-256-2245.

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