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Northern Arizona lawmaker resigns from legislature to join Biden administration

Rep. Arlando Teller, D-Chinle, has resigned from his seat at the state legislature to work with the Biden administration.

Teller told House Speaker Rusty Bowers in a letter that his resignation will be effective Jan. 31.

“I am honored and humbled to have been selected by President Biden to work for his administration,” Teller wrote in the letter. “I look forward to continuing my public service in this new role and am grateful for your sincere support and guidance during my time at the House.”

Teller’s role with the Biden administration had not been publicly announced.

Since 2019, Teller has represented Legislative District 7, which spans much of northern and eastern Arizona. He is a member of the Navajo Nation. At the legislature, he has advocated for more investments in tribal and rural infrastructure and LGBTQ issues.

Before serving in the House of Representatives, Teller worked in the aviation industry for the cities of Mesa and Phoenix, and later spent several years working for the California Department of Transportation. He also worked as a senior transportation planner at the Navajo Nation Division of Transportation, and was deputy division director at that agency, according to his biography on the Arizona Legislature website.

In 1995, he became the first Native American graduate from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, according to the bio.

Teller is also the grandson of Edward Tah, a Navajo Code Talker. He was raised by a single mother, who died from COVID-19 complications in December.

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In a Facebook post following the Jan. 20 inauguration of President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, Teller wrote he felt invigorated by the new administration.

This report was first published by the Arizona Mirror.

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Teller has represented Legislative District 7, which spans much of northern and eastern Arizona, since 2019. He is a member of the Navajo Nation.