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The American Indian Chamber of Commerce of Arizona to Present Recognition at Annual Holiday Business Awards Luncheon

(Flagstaff, Ariz. – December 12, 2013) – The Navajo Nation Gaming Enterprise (NNGE) is honored to announce it will receive the “Tribal Enterprise of the Year” award for its outstanding performance in 2013 and the successful launch of its Twin Arrows Navajo Casino Resort. The American Indian Chamber of Commerce of Arizona (AICCAZ) will present NNGE CEO Derrick Watchman the prestigious award at the Annual Holiday Business Awards Luncheon on December 13, 2013.

“We are honored to be recognized by our peers for the quality of work and amount of work we have done at the Navajo Nation Gaming Enterprise and Twin Arrows to provide jobs and economic stimulus for Arizona,” states Derrick Watchman, NNGE CEO. The selection committee understands my vision of creating the premier gaming entertainment destination in the region as we provide dynamic new business opportunities for the Navajo people."

Every year since 2008, the AICCAZ has been holding an awards program to recognize outstanding businesses that contribute to the economy that positively affect American Indian businesses and entrepreneurs.

AICCAZ reviews the performances of its business members – made up of American Indian-owned businesses, tribal enterprises and corporations – for their contribution to the American Indian business community. The awards are given in four categories that include: Small American Indian Business of the Year; Corporate Partner of the Year; Business Diversity Program of the Year; and Tribal Enterprise of the Year.

This year, the AICCAZ announces the following:

• Tribal Enterprise of the Year: Navajo Nation Gaming Enterprise for their Twin Arrows Navajo Casino Resort Project

• Business Diversity Program of the Year: Kitchell Contractors

• Corporate Partner of the Year: Ak-Chin Indian Community

• American Indian Small Business or Entrepreneur of the Year: Largo Photography

We congratulate Mr. Derrick Watchman and the entire Navajo Nation Gaming Enterprise family for their efforts to launch the Twin Arrows Navajo Casino Resort in 2013 and the tremendous positive impact it has already had in just seven months since its grand opening,” explained Mr. Loren Tapahe, AICCAZ president and CEO. “The interiors, design and architecture are breathtaking and display Navajo culture in a commendable fashion.”

The decision to name NNGE/TANCR was also because of its dedication to use American Indian laborers for the majority of the construction and to ultimately, once opened, to have an employment of more than 90 percent American Indian employees, much of that number being from the Navajo Nation.

“The economic impacts of NNGE and Twin Arrows go beyond the 1,500 jobs we have created or thousands of dollars we've pumped back into the local economy in five years," Watchman added. "We are improving the quality of life for the construction workers and tradespeople that helped build each property, the ranchers, farmers and other local food suppliers, hundreds of Navajo artists and many more that are able to showcase their talents and culture through our Navajo Resort and Casino."

Located at the Casino Arizona showroom, the Annual Holiday Business Awards Luncheon is open to the public and will include a silent auction, toy drive and live entertainment. For more information on Twin Arrows Navajo Casino Resort visit or its Facebook page at

About the Navajo Nation Gaming Enterprise:

The NNGE is a Navajo Nation wholly-owned business entity created by the Navajo Nation in September 2006. NNGE is authorized by the Navajo Nation to develop and operate Navajo casinos in accordance with federal and Navajo Nation laws, as well as the negotiated Navajo Nation-applicable state compacts (New Mexico and Arizona).

NNGE opened its first Navajo Casino on Nov. 19, 2008 – Fire Rock Navajo Casino in Church Rock Chapter, near Gallup, N.M. The second Navajo Casino opened Oct. 13, 2010 – Flowing Water Navajo Casino in Tsé Daak’áán Chapter, near Shiprock, N.M. The third Navajo Casino opened Jan. 16, 2012 – Northern Edge Navajo Casino – in Upper Fruitland Chapter, near Farmington, N.M. The fourth Navajo Casino – Twin Arrows Navajo Casino Resort – is located in Leupp Chapter, near Flagstaff, Ariz. Currently, the NNGE has nearly 1,500 employees


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