Virgil Masayesva Memorial:


PO Box 15004, Flagstaff, AZ 86011-5004
Phone: (928) 523-9555
Fax: (928) 523-1266
itep@nau.edu

Virgil Masayesva Memorial

Virgil Masayesva On March 16, 2005, Indian Country lost an extraordinary leader, Virgil Masayesva.

Virgil was the co-founder and director of the Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals (ITEP) at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, Arizona. As a director, Virgil directed and managed ITEP's tribal environmental training programs and was instrumental in establishing ITEP's air quality programs including the American Indian Air Quality Training Program and the Tribal Air Monitoring Support Center and many other programs dedicated to the protection and preservation of tribal resources and tribal environmental management.

Tribes throughout the country have benefited from the environmental trainings, professional assistances, and conferences that ITEP provides. Through Virgil's work and commitment in providing trainings, he has changed the direction of tribal resources and the development of environmental management in Indian country forever.

Virgil Masayesva Tribal Air Programs Excellence Award:
Virgil Masayesva was the Director of the Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals at Northern Arizona University from it's inception until his passing in 2005. Virgil is commemorated for his leadership, dedication, innovation and commitment to the support of tribal air programs; their creation, development, advancement and ultimate success in promoting tribal sovereignty, tribal culture and tribal environmental protection. This award was developed to recognize and perpetuate continuing contributions to that legacy.

Nominations are now open for the Virgil Masayesva Tribal Air Programs Excellence Award!
Tribal environmental professionals, tribal programs, and environmental professionals in consortia, universities or other areas who have excelled in air quality protection efforts in Indian country. EPA, TAMS, and ITEP staff are ineligible for this award.

Purpose: Virgil Masayesva was the Director of the Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals at Northern Arizona University from its inception until his passing in 2005. Virgil is commemorated for his leadership, dedication, innovation and commitment to the support of tribal air programs; their creation, development, advancement and ultimate success in promoting tribal sovereignty, tribal culture and tribal environmental protection. This award was developed to recognize and perpetuate continuing contributions to that legacy.

What: To recognize, memorialize and promote outstanding accomplishments, dedication and contributions to the advancement of human health and environmental protection in Indian country particularly as they relate to the improvement of air quality management. At this time, the award recognizes individuals and tribes that have shown exceptional dedication and accomplishment in advancing the interests of tribal air programs. Who is eligible: Tribal environmental professionals, tribal programs, and environmental professionals in consortia, universities or other areas who have excelled in air quality protection efforts in Indian country. EPA, TAMS and ITEP staff are ineligible for this award.

Criteria for eligibility: The following criteria are suggested achievements which can be used to determine if nominees’ actions are likely to qualify for this award:

  • Currently or previously engaged in air quality management related field for at least three years.
  • Involved in National or Regional Committee work (e.g., NTAA, TAMS, NCAI, USET, TSC, NTOC/RTOC, inter-tribal consortia, academia, etc...)
  • Has attained an outstanding level of success and/or recognition for air quality related achievements
  • Has developed a unique approach to tribal air programs that is widely recognized for its success and/or innovation
  • Has shown outstanding dedication in achieving a major milestone for tribal air programs

Application / nomination Process: Open and can self nominate. Nominations must be submitted at least seven days prior to the spring meeting of the Steering Committee. The Steering Committee may alter deadlines should circumstances warrant. Nominations must describe the accomplishments and how they apply to one of the categories listed below. Judging and selection can only be based on information provided in the nomination, so all supporting information and documentation must be included.

Deadline – For 2018 please send nomination forms and supporting information to Darlene Santos at the TAMS Center by March 02, 2018. Award will be given out at the National Tribal Forum on Air Quality (NTF) in May 2018.

Selection Process: Nominations for the Award are reviewed and selected by the voting members of the TAMS Center Steering Committee. Selection of nominees to be presented with the Award is the sole discretion of the Steering Committee. If the Steering Committee finds that nominees do not reach the standard of excellence required for the Award, they may choose to withhold the Award until the next nomination cycle. Should adequate nominations be available, one award will be presented in each of the available categories.

Categories: The following categories are available for nominations for this award. Nominations must address one of the categories of Technical Excellence; Tribal Program Development; or Policy Development. The descriptions are intended as guidelines, not requirements for eligibility. Nominees may compete in multiple categories, but may only win in one category per year.

Technical Excellence – Recognition of outstanding technical effort in monitoring, risk assessment, modeling, or other technical activities.
  • Demonstrated outstanding leadership in use of technology
  • Demonstrated outstanding leadership in developing policies and strategies in technical areas (monitoring strategies, risk assessment approaches, data management etc.)
  • Demonstrated outstanding efforts in support other tribal air programs including communication, coordination and participation in regional and national initiatives
Tribal Program Development – Recognition of outstanding efforts in developing tribal program components, including training, tools, communications, capacity building, TAS, Tribal regulations or codes, strategic planning and other programmatic activities.
  • Demonstrate outstanding leadership and dedication in developing tribal air programs
  • Development of innovative codes, regulations, TIPs or voluntary programs to address air quality issues in Indian country.
  • Demonstrate an outstanding ability to leverage resources to support tribal air programs
  • Demonstrate outstanding innovation and creativity in developing resources and information to support tribal air programs
  • Demonstrate an exceptional personal investment to providing support and capacity building for tribal air programs
Policy Development – Recognition of outstanding efforts to participate in and affect policies and actions that support or enhance air quality protection in Indian country.
  • Demonstrate outstanding commitment and/or achievement in the development of policy initiatives, actions or processes to support air quality protection in Indian country
  • Demonstrate outstanding commitment and/or achievement in the use of policy initiatives, actions or processes to defend and uphold inherent tribal sovereignty with regards to air quality in Indian country
Deadline: March 2, 2018

Online nomination:
2018 Nomination Form

For more information contact: Darlene Santos at Darlene.Santos@nau.edu.



Scholarship information:
Virgil Masayesva Scholarship information brochure [pdf]
Virgil Masayesva Scholarship recipients


For more information please contact:
ITEP General Information

928/523-9555
itep@nau.edu