Joann Whiting has dedicated her life mission to giving back to the people and has been instrumental in contributing to the wellbeing of the people of the Navajo Nation and beyond.
After growing up in a domestically violent home, getting into a domestic violence relationship and losing her son to the state for 2 years and 2 months, she is now on her New Life path for over 10 years. She attributes her transformation to the wise and beautiful women that she encountered along her path, her native mom, Paula Henry, who was a basket weaver, cedar hat weaver and a domestic violence counsellor, and Sally Heath, Joann's behavior health therapist, who showed her a different way of living a beautiful way of life. Joann states that because of these two women in her life, she learned how to stand on her own two feet, spread her wings and fly, and be a woman. After overcoming her addiction and putting in a lot of hard work, Joann got her son back! Joann also has a beautiful daughter and three wonderful grandchildren.
Joann lived in Alaska, where she worked as a home caregiver, housekeeper, pastry chef and hotel chef. She learned to make native drums and was involved in delivering salmon, being a part of canoe runs and assisting elders with their daily needs.
She then lived and worked at the Grand Canyon southern rim, where she met Bitahnii Wayne Wilson and, together with her son, got involved in delivering food, water, water barrels, ppe, firewood, cleaning supplies, and critical aid to remote Navajo, Hopi and Apache families batting the pandemic and with no access to running water. The effort started with Joann buying a pick up truck with her tax refund money for water and food deliveries for the people. Past summer, Joann traveled to Washington, bringing a truckload of donated supplies from Seattle, to deliver to the people. Joann's son assists Joann and Wayne with all of their distributions.