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Navajo Nation Gets 1st Starbucks

The Navajo Nation, the largest reservation in the country, is finally getting its first Starbucks in Window Rock. This is another sign that the tribe’s capital city is growing.

From Window Rock, the closest Starbucks is a half hour away in Gallup. Local leaders are excited to see new businesses as it means an opportunity for jobs. Half the tribe is unemployed.

Today it’s easier to get a business started on the reservation, as economic development policies have removed some of the red tape.

Window Rock is still holding onto its traditional culture while embracing the western world’s modern conveniences. But some people are opposed to the McDonald’s and Starbucks because of the tribe’s high rates of obesity and diabetes.

Laurel Morales was a senior field correspondent at KJZZ from 2011 to 2020.