On October 19, Michael S. Black, Bureau of Indian Affairs director, announced Sharon Pinto as regional director of the BIA’s Navajo Regional Office in Gallup, New Mexico, citing her commitment to the welfare of the Navajo people.
Pinto, an enrolled Navajo Nation member, served as the regional deputy director since October 28, 2007 and was the acting regional director since May 4.
“Sharon Pinto is a proven and capable senior federal manager, and her commitment to the welfare of the Navajo people makes her an outstanding choice for regional director of the Bureau of Indian Affairs’ Navajo Regional Office,” Black said. “I have every confidence in her ability to successfully lead the office in carrying out the BIA’s mission to serve the Navajo Nation.”
Pinto’s new office oversees five agencies that serve the Nation with more than 200,000 members and a reservation that covers 16 million acres throughout Arizona, New Mexico and Utah. Her promotion became effective October 9.
“As the new Navajo Regional Office regional director, I want to thank BIA Director Black for this tremendous opportunity,” Pinto said. “I look forward to working with him as a member of his field management team, and to maintaining the office’s high standard of service to the Navajo Nation.”
Pinto has been responsible for management of 420 employees and the administration of more than $170 million in BIA programs and $90 million P.L. 93-638 Indian self-determination contracts with the tribe since she has been in the acting role.
She began her federal career in 2001 as an Indian self-determination specialist with the BIA’s Southwest Regional Office in Albuquerque, New Mexico. That followed 11 years of working for the Navajo Nation, the state of New Mexico and the private sector. She graduated from Northern Arizona University with a Bachelor of Science degree in criminal justice in 1991.