Woman Warriors - Honoring

Wednesday, April 3, 2019, 9:00 AM
Directly outside of the tradeshow floor entrance

In Native tradition; Women have always been considered as the sacred givers of life. The balance between males and females in decision making has always been important. NIGA will be honoring six of our women elected Tribal Leaders in recognition of their commitment and leadership for their Tribal Nations and all of Indian Country. Our women are our strength and our resilience and ensure our future. Please join us as we recognize these honorable Tribal Women Leaders…

  • Lynn Valbuena, Chairwoman, San Manuel Band of Mission Indians
  • Fawn Sharp, President, Quinault Indian Nation
  • Shannon Holsey, President, Stockbridge Munsee Band, Mohican Nation
  • Melanie Benjamin, Chief Executive, Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe
  • Stephanie Bryan, Chair & CEO, Poarch Band of Creek Indians
  • Bernadine Burnette, President, Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation

Tribal Sovereignty in the 21st Century: Tribal Leaders on the Front Line

Thursday, April 4, 2019, 9:00 AM
Room 6A, Second Level

Protecting Tribal Sovereignty has always been and continues to be a focus of significant importance for Tribal Governments. From Felix Cohen’s Handbook of Federal Indian Law to the myriad of decisions at Federal District Courts and the Supreme Court and Administrative Law and Policy, the pendulum continues to swing in a fashion that disrupts the rights of Self-Governance and Self Determination. Join us for an energetic debate of Tribal Leaders as they discuss the continued importance of fiercely protecting Tribal Sovereignty into the 21st Century.

Moderator: Chairman Brian Cladoosby, Swinomish


  • Mark Macarro, Chairman, Pechanga Band of Luiseno Indians
  • Shannon Holsey, President, Stockbridge Munsee Band, Mohican Nation
  • Rodney Butler, Chairman, Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation
  • Stephen Lewis, Governor, Gila River Indian Community
  • Fawn Sharp, President, Quinault Indian Nation
  • Stephanie Bryan, Chair & CEO, Poarch Band of Creek Indians


March 24-27, 2020
San Diego Convention Center