August 29, 2014

Derrick Watchman elected new Chairman of the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Developm

MESA, Ariz. – The National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development (NCAIED) is pleased to announce Derrick Watchman, member of the Navajo Nation, as the newly elected Chairman of the organization.

Thirty years of dedication in financial and tribal management have culminated to a very humbling moment for Derrick Watchman. Within three months, he has been named CEO of Navajo Nation Gaming Enterprise (NNGE) and elected Chairman of the Board of Directors for the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development.

Formerly he was Chief Financial Officer for NNGE, and prior, he was Vice President and Senior Relationship Manager at JP Morgan Chase Bank’s Native American Banking Group. He provided tribal financial and banking services, including structuring over $500 million in tribal credit transactions and treasury services.

Derrick was principle with Watchman & Associates of Window Rock, Arizona providing business advisory and development services. He is formerly the Chief of Staff for the Navajo Nation where he managed Executive Branch program and services. 

Mr. Watchman has also served as Director of Indian Affairs at the U.S. Department of Energy. Previously, he worked for the Wells Fargo Bank handling Native American banking and financing.  Mr. Watchman was Chief Operating Officer and General Manager of the Navajo Nation’s Dinè Power Authority where he advised on Navajo Nation energy projects. He also held the Navajo Tax Commission Director post. Mr. Watchman also worked with Prudential Capital Corporation as a private placement banker. He holds an MBA from the University of California and a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Arizona.

Little may know, Mr. Watchman’s financial career amazingly began at the first Reservation Economic Summit in 1986 put on by the NCAIED. And now, he is able to attend the 27th annual Reservation Economic Summit, (now called National RES Las Vegas 2013) as Chairman of the Board of Directors. Previous to his election as chairman, Mr. Watchman served as a Member of the Board of Directors for ten years.

“The NCAIED has been through a lot of change,” says Mr. Watchman. “As a member of the Board, and now as Chairman, I will strive to continue improving the economy of Indian Country.  It is my honor to bring my 30 years of experience to my colleagues on the Board of Directors, where, collectively, we will continue to improve RES and all of our conferences.”


Founded in 1969, the NCAIED is an American Indian national organization governed by a Native American Board of Directors that promotes and advocates commerce for tribal, private, and native business. It is the oldest and largest American Indian specific economic and business development organization in the nation. The NCAIED’s signature event is the Reservation Economic Summit (RES), the premiere American Indian economic and business development conference in the nation.


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