AMBER Alert in Indian Country Leader Named ‘Champion of Change’

Photo of AATTAP-AIIC Program Manager Tyesha Wood talking to a class during a 2023 event. Included is this quote from her: It's an honor to be recognized by a truly amazing organization. I'm also thankful to be working with so many other people who provide resources for victims of crime—and find solutions to making our communities safer."


Photo of Tyesha M. Wood
Tyesha M. Wood

Tyesha M. Wood—a Program Manager for the AMBER Alert Training & Technical Assistance Program (AATTAP) who oversees the AMBER Alert in Indian Country (AIIC) Initiative—is one of five public servants nationwide selected by the End Violence Against Women International (EVAWI) organization as a 2024 “Champion of Change.”

EVAWI operates as a catalyst for justice and healing, “so that every survivor of sexual assault and domestic violence gets the right response, every time,” the non-profit group says. “Champions of Change work on a state or national level, to create system-level reforms in the way we respond to sexual assault, intimate partner violence, and other forms of gender-based violence.”

Wood was chosen as a “Champion of Change” because she is “a powerful advocate with an unwavering commitment to justice for children and victims of interpersonal violence in Indian Country,” the EVAWI notes.

Photo of AATTAP Administrator Janell Rasmussen with this quote: "Tyesha works tirelessly to protect Indian Country youth through her work with our AIIC Program, so this recognition is well deserved. She truly is a champion at bringing Tribal communities together to protect children."

Crediting Wood’s 17-year career in law enforcement—during which time she was a detective specializing in domestic violence cases and crimes against children—EVAWI had this to say about her:

Ms. Wood, a member of the Navajo Nation, is revered for her expertise in helping communities develop strategic, cross-jurisdictional responses to safely recover missing or abducted children. … A national speaker on issues of protecting Native youth from human trafficking and abuse, Wood also works directly with communities, traveling to remote villages and Tribal lands around the country. Because culturally specific responses are crucial to protecting Indigenous children, she helps communities apply relevant solutions and implement comprehensive child recovery strategies.   …

Wood’s leadership in promoting culturally and trauma-informed responses also extends to survivors of sexual assault. As a detective with Gila River Police Department, she helped launch the first “Start by Believing” campaign in Indian Country. 

Wood’s personal dedication and professional effectiveness in strengthening responses to sex trafficking, aiding missing and exploited children, and driving implementation of culturally sensitive approaches make her an inspiration to all. 

AATTAP’s AMBER Alert in Indian Country Initiative was established in 2007 by the Department of Justice’s Office of Justice Programs with the goal of creating and expanding child recovery practices, capacity, and resources in Tribal communities. For more details about the AIIC’s training opportunities and outreach, visit or its website,

The EVAWI was founded in 2003 by Sergeant Joanne Archambault of the San Diego Police Department. During her decades of work with victims, Sergeant Archambault saw a critical need for training law enforcement in how to investigate sexual assault and domestic violence. Criminal justice practitioners simply did not have the training and support they needed to conduct thorough investigations guided by best practices. EVAWI was created to fill this void. For more details about the 2024 “Champions of Change,” visit