Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation

Leadership (updated February 2017) Contact Information
Bernadine Burnette, President Address: PO Box 17779
Pansy Thomas, Vice President                Fountain Hills, AZ 85269
Selena Castaneda, Secretary Phone:    480-789-7000
Pamela Mott, Treasurer Website: http://www.fmyn.org
Gerald Doka, Council Member
Paul Russell, Council Member
GOVERNANCE: The Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation is governed by a Tribal Council comprised of a President, Vice President, Treasurer, Secretary, and two Council Members. Council members serve staggered 4-year terms, and elections are held in January of even-numbered years. The Council meets the first Tuesday of every month. Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation is in Congressional District 6; Legislative District 23.
CONSTITUTION AND CODE: 

COMMUNITY PROFILE: The Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation was created by Executive Order in 1903.  The Reservation is located in the territory of the once nomadic Yavapai people. Two important victories have shaped the history of the Nation: The Orme Dam Project and the fight for gaming rights.  In the 1970s, the community came together with other tribes to successfully fight the construction of the Orme Dam, a project that would have flooded the Reservation and forced members from their homeland.  And in 1992, tribal members held a three-week standoff with the government, a protest that persuaded the Arizona Governor to sign a gaming compact with the Tribe. May 12th is now a tribal holiday honoring that victory. 

The Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation is located 23 miles northeast of Phoenix, Arizona.  According to the 2010 Census, approximately 971 individuals live on the Reservation which is bordered by the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community on the south, the Town of Fountain Hills on the west, and the Tonto National Forest on the north and east.  The Reservation is one of the smallest in Arizona, covering just 40 square miles. The Verde River flows north-south through the middle of the Reservation and converges with the Salt River. 

The Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation is a young community.  The under-18 population accounts for 36.8 percent of all tribal members, which is considerably higher than the state of Arizona and Maricopa County.*  The median age for the tribe is 27, compared to a median age of 35.9 for the state.

Households in the Nation are more likely to be multigenerational, and less than half of households are traditional married-couple families (36 percent). Households headed by a single female make up 42 percent of all households. Approximately 30 percent of the community speaks a language other than English. 

More than half of those employed work for the government, and the median household income for the Nation is $51,157. The Nation operates Fort McDowell Tribal Farm which produces alfalfa, pecans, and citrus.  The Nation also runs the Fort McDowell Casino, and offers tourist activities through Fort McDowell Adventures.

*All Statistics are from the 2006-2010 American Community Survey, 5-Year Estimates.