About SIPI Board of Regents

SIPI Board Members

The SIPI Board of Regents serves as the official representative group for the college and has significant roles in both advisory and policy making for the college. Working closely with the SIPI President, the Board strives to develop a working relationship to enable shared governance with administration, faculty, staff, and students. This eleven-member board are representatives appointed by their respective tribal entities and includes the Student Government Association President, as well as SIPI's President Emeritus or a SIPI alumnus.

  • Adam Jerome Begaye, Chair

    Adam Jerome Begaye, Chair

    Adam Begaye is a member of the Navajo Nation. He is Oozéí Táchii'nii (Red Running into the Water People Clan) with Hopi heritage, born for Bįįh bitoodnii (Deer Spring Clan), his maternal grandfather is Ta'neeszahnii (Tangle Clan), and his paternal grandfather is 'Áshįįhi (Salt People Clan). He is originally from Shiprock, NM.

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  • Tanya Lewis, Vice Chair

    Tanya Lewis, Vice Chair

    Tanya Lewis is Chairwoman of the Yavapai-Apache Nation (YAN) located in Camp Verde, Arizona in the heart of the Verde Valley. She is the daughter of the late Eathel and Lyman Lewis. Lewis is a graduate of Mingus Union High School in nearby Cottonwood and earned an Associates Degree in Business Management and a Leadership Certificate from Yavapai College where she graduated with honors.

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  • Esther Peterson, Secretary/Treasurer

    Esther Peterson, Secretary/Treasurer

    Esther Peterson is currently the Secretary and Treasurer for the Board of Regents.  She was born and raised in Steamboat Canyon, Arizona and represents Navajo Nation (Arizona). 

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  • Donna Montoya

    Donna Montoya

    I am Donna Montoya, a member of the Jicarilla Apache Nation. I am Ollero (White Clan).  I was raised in Dulce, New Mexico. I graduated from Dulce High School and continued my Education at S.I.P.I., where I received my Associates of Applied Science in Computer Technology in 2003.

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  • Darrell Flyingman

    Darrell Flyingman

    Born in Clinton, Oklahoma and raised in Colony, Oklahoma by his grandparents, Darrell Flyingman is a member of the Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes. He has been on the Board of Regents at SIPI since 2013.  After graduating from high school, Mr. Flyingman joined the U.S. Marine Corps.

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  • Owen Little

    Owen Little

    Owen Little, an enrolled member of the Mescalero Apache tribe, joined the Board in 2022. After graduating from Tularosa High School in 1986, Owen moved on to a career with the BIA Forestry and Wildland Fire Management…


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  • Francis Tafoya

    Francis Tafoya

    Francis Tafoya, an enrolled member of the Santa Clara Pueblo, is currently the longest serving member on the Board of Regents. He chaired the Board from 2002-2013. He brings tribal government, higher education, and pre-K education experience.

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  • Samantha Sanchez

    Samantha Sanchez

    Hi, I am Samantha Sanchez. I was born and raised in Albuquerque, New Mexico and I am enrolled in the Seminole Nation Tribe of Oklahoma. I'm a full-time student and the reason I chose to attend SIPI is because it offered a lot of opportunity and affordability. 

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  • Dr. John Bush

    Dr. John Bush

    A San Carlos Apache tribal member in Arizona, Dr. Bush brings 32 years of educational experience to the Board of Regents. His undergraduate years were spent at Haskell Indian Jr. College, Eastern Arizona Jr. College and Northern Arizona University.

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  • Southern Pueblos Council (Vacant)

    Southern Pueblos Council (Vacant)

    Pending appointment

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  • SIPI President Emeritus/Alumni (Vacant)

    SIPI President Emeritus/Alumni (Vacant)

    Pending appointment

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Giving Back To Our Community

The Board of Regents incorporated as a 501(c)3 non-profit in 1975, under which they work through their development office to raise awareness and funding in support of SIPI, a federal land-grant college located in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Please consider joining us. Your gift today will prove invaluable in supporting the journey of our tribal leaders of tomorrow!

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