Karen Francis-Begay is the Assistant Vice President for Tribal Relations at the University of Arizona (UA). Her primary role is to serve as a liaison between Arizona’s tribal leadership and the University in efforts to strengthen partnerships and advance mutual goals. Karen also served as the Director of Native American Student Affairs and Associate Director of the American Indian Language Development Institute (AILDI) at the UA. She has served on many national and regional boards to advance educational opportunities for Native American students and for women of color.
Karen's professional service has been recognized by national and local organizations such as the Flinn-Brown Leadership Academy who presented her a 2018 Arizona Champion Award for her commitment and contributions to Arizona’s Native Nations. Karen has a Bachelor of Science degree in Public Administration and a Master of Arts degree in American Indian Studies, and is a Ph.D. candidate in Higher Education at the UA. Born and raised on the Navajo Nation, she is of the Tábąąhá clan (Edge of Water) born for the Kiyaa’ áanii clan (Towering House).