excerpts of interviews with people with strong connections to San Juan County

Bill Boyle

Bill Boyle: Publisher of the San Juan Record. Boyle has roots in the county that go back 4 generations.

“I think the federal government is looking to send messages to communities throughout the West that it is not OK to plunder…”

Interview date 1-20-16. 

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Carleton Bowekaty: Zuni councilman and co-Chair of the Bears Ears Inter-Tribal Coalition.

“The basic concept is that we never take more than we need…and always offering something in return”

Interview date 4-27-16.

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Rebecca Benally:San Juan County Commissioner, representing the southern part of the county, including the Utah portion of the Navajo Nation.

“spiritual connection to mother earth and father time, preserve but not at the expense of economic development”

Interview date



Alfred Lomahquahu: Vice-Chair of the Hopi tribe and co-Chair of the Bears Ears Inter-Tribal Coalition.

“We need places like this… Somewhere along the line they may have lost something; the true essence of being human…”

Interview Date: 4-21-16

Heidi Redd

Heidi Redd: A cattle rancher since 1965.  Redd served as a member of San Juan County Commissioner Phil Lyman’s Public Lands Council.

“Ranching – isn’t an easy occupation… there is economic uncertainty every year, but it’s the love of doing it and producing something…”

Interview date: 4-20-16

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Phil Lyman: San Juan County Commissioner who organized the Lands Council in response to Rep. Rob Bishop’s (R-UT) call to provide stakeholder driven input to the Utah Public Lands Initiative.

“…with the Navajo kids…to me  it was just as natural as making a friend with anyone else you like…”

Interview date 4-5-16.

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Shane Shumway: Rancher and general contractor, Blanding, UT. Member, San Juan County Lands Council.

“This is all I know, same as them. It seems like their voice seems to take more value in the national scene as mine… I’m as native as anybody else…”

Interview date: 1-28-16

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Jonah Yellowman: Jonah is a Navajo Medicine Man, who has played an essential role as a spiritual advisor to the Bears Ears Inter-Tribal Coalition.

“You don’t say this is my land…This is everybody’s land…”

Interview date: 5-2-16