Navajo Nation vice president and husband separate
Navajo Nation Vice President Richelle Montoya and her husband have separated. According to her office, she and Olsen Chee will part ways after 11 years of marriage.
In a statement, Montoya said she wants to be transparent with the Navajo people about the personal matter and that her focus remains on her duties as vice president of the tribe.
Montoya also said she’s a mother and her priority is protecting her children.
"After many thoughtful discussions, Olsen and I have come to the difficult decision to separate. While this is an intensely personal matter, I want to be transparent with the Navajo people I serve. My focus remains fully on my duties as Vice President and continuing to work on behalf of all Diné in support of President Nygren.”
“I’m a mom,” she continued. “My priority is protecting my children. That includes the people of the Navajo Nation. My roles and responsibilities as Navajo Nation Vice President will not change. "
She and Navajo President Buu Nygren took office in January.
Prior to the election, Montoya worked for a Window Rock-based nonprofit legal aid organization.