Nia Buckley

Community Outreach & Engagement Coordinator

Nia Buckley (she/her) is a disabled veteran of the United States Air Force and a recent graduate of the University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work with her Master’s degree in Macro Social Work Practice. Nia is deeply committed to anti-racist change work. Race though a social construct, has always been a topic of conversation at a young age having a Black mother and white father. Growing up biracial in a predominately Black community, she was immersed in Black history and the beauty of being Black. Through this upbringing and then entering the military, it was a culture shock for her to enter an environment of majority-white men and anti-Black practices. While navigating the military institution, she found herself in predominantly white spaces with people who were racist. With these experiences, Nia is determined to advocate and lead change in racial equity within the rooms and organizations she occupies.

While pursuing her bachelor’s degree in social work at Arizona State University, Nia worked for Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System (AHCCCS), Arizona’s Medicaid agency. There, she advocated for culturally diverse behavioral healthcare policies within AHCCCS, addressing and eliminating barriers to mental health access for members of the Black community. As a mental health advocate and someone who navigates the behavioral health system personally and professionally, she also is certified in Mental Health First Aid. While at the National Alliance on Mental Illness of Arizona, she helped end the