October 14, 2009

Obama to hold tribal summit

White House announces tribal nations summitThe first Tribal Nations Conference will be held in Washington, D.C., on Thursday, November 5, the White House announced today.

Invitations are being sent to all 564 federally recognized tribes. Each tribe can send one representative.

"I look forward to hearing directly from the leaders in Indian Country about what my administration can do to not only meet their needs, but help improve their lives and the lives of their peoples," President Barack Obama said. "This conference will serve as part of the ongoing and important consultation process that I value, and further strengthen the nation-to-nation relationship."

Tribal leaders heard about the summit during the morning session of the National Congress of American Indians conference in Palm Springs, California. Kim Teehee, a member of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma who serves as Indian policy adviser at the White House, said Obama is listening to Indian Country."

"It's your house too," Teehee told attendees.

NCAI President Joe Garcia welcomed news of the summit. “Indian Country has been waiting for well over a decade for a meeting of this caliber with the President of the United States. I commend President Obama for setting this precedent for his administration’s nation to nation working relationship with tribes."

"We have an ambitious agenda to strengthen economic development and improve tribal government services. Tribal leaders are very satisfied that President Obama is fulfilling his promise to meet with tribal leaders on a regular basis during his term in office," added Garcia, who will end his term as president this week.
MyTribeTV to stream White House tribal meetMyTribeTV, an Indian-owned business in Seattle, Washington, will provide online coverage of the first-ever White House Tribal Nations Conference on November 5.

The event will be streamed at tribalsummit.mytribetv.com. MyTribeTV is the exclusive provider for the event.
Comment:  Hey, November 5 is the same day as my talk on Native stereotypes. If you're in town, come on by the USDA. Whom would you rather meet: me or Obama?

For more on the subject, see New Deal for Indians? and The 2008 Presidential Campaign.

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