Fort Yuma-Quechan Tribe

Leadership (updated November 2019) Contact Information
Jordan D. Joaquin, President Address: PO Box 1899
Virgil S. Smith, Vice President                Yuma, Arizona 85366-1899
Aaron Brown, Council Member Phone:    760-572-0213
Ina M. Hall, Council Member Website:
Jonathan E. Koteen, Council Member Community Health Director: Sosa Nita Diaz <>
Gloria L. Bryant, Council Member Education Director: Ora Lee Durand-Valisto <>
Charles R. Escalanti, Council Member
GOVERNANCE: The Fort Yuma-Quechan Tribe is governed by a President, Vice President, and five council members. Council members serve two-year terms, and elections are held on the first Monday of January every other year. The President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer are selected by the Council. The Council meets on the first Tuesday of each month. The Tribe resides in Congressional Districts 3 and 4; Legislative Districts 4 and 13.
CONSTITUTION: To view the full Constitution of the Fort Yuma-Quechan Tribe, adopted 1936, click here.

COMMUNITY PROFILE: Previously known as the Yuma Indians, the Quechan Tribe of the Fort Yuma Reservation have always lived in the Colorado River Valley. Their land borders California and Mexico, and the Reservation was established in 1884. Quechan (pronounced "kwuh-tsan") means "those who descended." Their distinct language, the native tongue of southeastern California and southwestern Arizona, is believed to be spoken by just a few hundred people.  

Their location along the Colorado River has meant a long history of trading and exchange networks with other tirbes, as well as battles over land.  According to the 2015 Census, 2,393 Quechan live on the Fort Yuma Indian Reservation.

The Quechan Tribe is a young community.  The under-18 population accounts for 54 percent of all tribal members.*  The median age for the Tribe is 31.1, compared to a median age of 35.9 for Arizona as a whole. Diverse families may be multigenerational, traditional married-couple families (51 percent), or single female-headed (29 percent). 

The Fort Yuma Quechan Tribe operates the Paradise Casino in Yuma, Arizona.  The Tribe also operates a sand and gravel enterprise, five trailer and RV parks, a grocery store, and a museum.  The Tribe's 700-acre farm is leased to non-tribal members. The household median income for the tribe is $40,855.

*All statistics are from the 2011-2015 American Community Survey.