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New victim advocate brings experience to UNHS position

Susie Martin

Susie Martin

Susie Martin’s experience, knowledge and connections, make her a perfect fit for the UNHS Behavioral Health staff as the newest Domestic Violence Victim Advocate.

  She was born in Monument Valley at the old Seventh-Day Adventist Hospit- al and grew up in Monument Valley. She graduated from Monument Valley High School, in Kayenta, Arizona and then served a four-year hitch in the United States Marine Corp as a Legal Services Specialist.

  After the Marine Corp, Susie worked for the District of Columbia’s Department of Corrections, in Lorton, Virginia for over a year. That job, she says, led to a position as a juvenile probation officer with the Navajo Nation Judicial Branch. She later worked as a probation/parole officer and volunteered as a victim advocate in the 1990’s for six or seven years. She assisted Police Officers as a victim advocate in the Kayenta District, which included the Black Mesa, Navajo Mountain, Chilchinbeto, Oljato and Monument Valley areas.

  During this time, she helped institute the Victim Advocate Volunteer Program. In this program, volunteer advocates used their own time to provide rides to court and other transportation, death notifications, meals, hotel stays when needed, and many other services to residents in the area, using money collected from fines of DUI offenders. 

  In 2006 the Navajo Nation Judicial Branch established the Aneth Court. The Aneth Chapter meeting hall was used to hear cases. The first case for the court was tried in July 2007. The Aneth Chapter paid to have a new court building constructed in 2008. Susie served as the Court Administrator there for eleven years, overseeing all matters pertaining to the court, under the direction of Judge Irene Black. She helped establish a community court for the Aneth district.  Aneth Judicial District is the only Court on the Navajo Nation that has the Tribal Re-entry program; a program to reintegrate offenders/prisoners that live on the Utah Navajo Strip of the Navajo Nation. 

  These are just a few job experiences found in Susie Martin’s resume. Now, she’s decided to make a change and join Utah Navajo Health System so she can be closer to her 10-month old grandson in Monument Valley.

  She stressed that she hopes to get more services out to the Monument Valley and Navajo Mountain areas. As Advocates, she said, we are here to assist all victims.  Susie’s experience also includes an Associates Degree in Criminal Justice from the former College of Eastern Utah-Blanding Campus. She also has a Bachelors Degree in Psychology from Utah State University-Eastern Blanding Campus.

  UNHS Behavioral Health Director, Rick Hendy, said Susie has already made an impact. Susie got one area court to invite Hendy’s testimony in a case involving a female prisoner, who need-ed medication.

  “That’s something we’ve not been able to do before,” Hendy said. “Susie is going to be a great addition to our office.”

  Susie is excited about her new position. She’s also excited about being just ten minutes from home and being able to spend more time with her grandson during the week. We are glad to have Susie Martin working with UNHS and know she will be a great asset to the organization. We wish her luck and hope everyone will say hello when you see her.