Hazel James Tohe is a trained Navajo Nation Advocate and has been committed to working with communities and families toward family wellness for decades in the areas of housing, food sovereignty, racial justice, and health equity. Hazel is the coordinator for the San Juan Collaborative for Health Equity, an initiative of the New Mexico Health Equity Partnership, the Santa Fe Community Foundation, and Indian Country Grassroots. Her primary role is to collaborate with partners to integrate cultural teachings and traditional knowledge into food, health, and racial justice policy. In her work, Hazel also focuses on capacity building within communities facing environmental health impacts, addresses issues such as homelessness, conducts racial justice education and trainings, hosts Indigenous youth planning committees, and designs summits to identify solutions for future generations.
Hazel is Diné/Navajo, of the Zuni Edgewater People; born for Black Streak through Wood People; maternal Chei/grandfather is Big Water; Nali/Paternal grandfather is of the Salt People. Hazel is a proud mother of four and a grandmother of five grandsons who honors Diné values, principles, and wisdom, learned from her parents and grandparents, by applying cultural protocols and bringing a Diné/Indigenous lens to her work. She believes in the importance of revitalizing Dine’ knowledge and language to effect positive change centered on unity and healing.