Derrick Watchman, Navajo, has been elected as the new chairman of the board of directors for the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development (NCAIED). Prior to his election, he served as a member of the board of directors for 10 years.
Watchman’s financial career started at the NCAIED's first Reservation Economic Summit in 1986. Currently at the 27th annual Reservation Economic Summit in Las Vegas, March 11-14, 2013, he is attending as chairman of the board.
“The NCAIED has been through a lot of change,” Watchman said in a press release. “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.”
The 30-year veteran of financial and tribal management also assumed a new role as CEO of the Navajo Nation Gaming Enterprise on January 1, 2013. Before that he was the chief financial officer for the Enterprise.
Among his many other credentials, he provided tribal financial and banking services, including structuring over $500 million in tribal credit transactions and treasury services, as vice president and senior relationship manager at JP Morgan Chase Bank's Native American Banking Group.
Watchman's resume also includes providing business advisory and development services as principle with Watchman & Associates of Window Rock, Arizona. Also, he was formerly the chief of staff for the Navajo Nation, where he managed the executive branch program and services.
In addition, Watchman has 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. Watchman was Chief Operating Officer and General Manager of the Navajo Nation’s Dine' Power Authority where he advised on Navajo Nation energy projects. He also held the Navajo Tax Commission Director post. Watchman 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.