Indian Gaming Update October/November 2013 | Volume 4, Issue 6
PAGE 2 NATIONAL CONGRESS OF AMERICAN INDIANS 70TH ANNUAL CONFERENCE
PAGE 6 NATIONAL CONGRESS OF AMERICAN INDIANS YOUTH LUNCHEON
PAGE 7 “THE GREATEST” HOSTS MUHAMMAD ALI HUMANITARIAN AWARDS CEREMONY
Indian Gaming Update
NATIONAL CONGRESS OF AMERICAN INDIANS 70TH ANNUAL CONFERENCE INDIAN COUNTRY COMES TO TULSA FOR A WEEK LONG DISCUSSION ON IMPORTANT TRIBAL ISSUES
Tulsa, OK (October 17, 2013) - Tribal nations from across the country came to Tulsa to participate in the NCAIâ€™s 70th Annual Convention & Marketplace. It was an important conference, in part because a new executive committee was being elected. The NCAI Executive Committee is charged with advancing and protecting tribal sovereignty. The executive committee members are elected by NCAI voting members and comprise the body of the oldest and largest Indian lobbying organization in the country. President Jefferson Keel stepped down on Friday, October 18th after serving two terms as president of NCAI. President Keel, who is the Lieutenant Governor of the Chickasaw Nation, worked with NCAI leadership to elevate the role of the organization that works on behalf of Indian tribes in Washington, D.C. He will remain a valued and respected leader within NCAI, the Chickasaw Nation, and throughout Indian country. On the first day during the 1st general assembly of the conference, President Jefferson Keel gave his final opening remarks. He stressed the importance of unity and the need for Indian country to maintain a strong presence in Washington, D.C. to protect tribal sovereignty. President Keel also spoke about the tremendous strides tribes have made since the founding of NCAI and the work that still needs to be done. This great leader and personal friend of NIGA gave a powerful message to Tribal Leaders and we should heed his call for Indian country to work together, and move forward to advance our common cause. Baby Veronica Dustin Brown was honored with a star quilt and eagle feather for the courage he displayed in fighting for his daughter in the Baby Veronica case. Indian country is very familiar with his case that unfortunately ended with the Supreme Court ruling that Mr. Brown had to give up custody of his daughter to a non-Indian couple. Dustin Brown served his country in Iraq as an active duty U.S. Army soldier. He was
Mark Macarro, Brian Cladoosby and Chairman Stevens at day two of the general assembly.
The General Assembly Meeting.
NCAI honored Dustin Brown for his efforts to get his daughter back.
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also honored by all the veterans in attendance that marched up to the stage to join him and stood behind him as an honor song played. Indian Business Another main topic in the general assembly focused on “Partnerships that Strengthen Tribal Economies.” This panel discussion, facilitated by John Mooers, President of Bluestone Strategy Group, focused on how large companies can partner and work with tribal communities. Representatives from Nike N7, Google, Bank of America and Wal-Mart spoke on how they are either partnering with tribes or are looking to find ways to develop their minority procurement spending for tribally owned and tribal member owned businesses. Tribal Gaming Subcommittee Update During the afternoon breakout sessions, NIGA’s Executive Director Jason Giles was invited to speak on a panel about the “Intertribal Tax Initiative: Current Issues & Legislative Agenda for 2013 & 2014. The issue of taxation in Indian Country and the need to treat Indian tribes fairly is one of the most important issues today. A bill to protect tribes and their members from Internal Revenue Service audits is moving forward in the 113th Congress. Senate bill S.1507, the Tribal General Welfare Exclusion Act, ensures that tribal members will not be unfairly taxed when benefits like elder care assistance or school supplies for children are provided by tribal governments. Chairman Stevens has chaired Tribal Gaming subcommittee for almost thirteen years. The subcommittee is a product of Tribal leader consensus. This year’s sub-committee reviewed a number of important issues facing the gaming industry. The issue of taxation fairness in Indian country was discussed extensively. Bills to protect tribal governments from unfair Internal Revenue Service audits are moving forward in the 113th Congress. House Bill H.R. 3043 and Senate Bill S.1507, the Tribal General Welfare Exclusion Act, would set up a system to ensure that tribal governments will be treated fairly by the IRS. Jason Giles and Chairman Stevens gave a gaming report to the general assembly highlighting legislation that NIGA is watching closely like Internet gaming, IRS taxation of Tribes, and Carcieri. The Indian Gaming Sub-Committee provided updates on Internet gaming and NIGA’s work with the National Tribal Gaming Commissioners and Regulators. Chairman Jamie Hummingbird talked about tribes preparing for online gaming and developing the regulatory ability to provide a safe internet platform on the reservation. The NCAI convention is always a great gathering of all tribal governments and leaders from throughout Indian
NIGA is watching Internet gaming, IRS taxation of Tribes, and Carcieri legislation closely.
country. NIGA takes great pride in its participation in the NCAI conference and in the tremendous work that tribal leaders accomplish during the conference. NIGA’s midyear meeting is next week on Tuesday, October 29th and Wednesday, October 30th at the Sandia Resort and Casino in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Chairman Stevens with tribal leaders from Montana and Oneida.
Chairman Stevens with President Cladoosby and Chairman Finley of Colville.
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Chairman Brian Cladoosby at the 2013 Legislative Summit in Washington, DC.
BRIAN CLADOOSBY NAMED NCAI PRESIDENT CHAIRMAN STEVENS WISHES NCAI PRESIDENT GOOD WISHES
The National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) elected a new President on Thursday, October 17, 2013, during its 70th Annual Convention and Marketplace. Chairman Brian Cladoosby of the Swinomish Indian Tribal Community will serve as the 21st President of NCAI. “I am confident that as Chairman Cladoosby takes on the Leadership role of NCAI, Indian Country will be well represented. With his 28 years of service in his own Tribal Government and leadership through his work with northwest Tribes, specifically with the Affiliated Tribes of Northwest Indians, he is well prepared for the task of representing Indian Country on a National level,” said National Indian Gaming Association Chairman, Ernie Stevens, Jr. “Chairman Cladoosby has been a longtime advocate
for Indian Gaming and has led his own Tribal Community to economic growth. He is an innovative leader who always gives credit to his community first for their economic progress. His nation has continued to diversify their economy by pursuing new forms of economic development while also maintaining their traditional way of life.”. “Founded in 1944, the National Congress of American Indians has a long established history and has been the leading force and voice in protecting Tribal Sovereignty. NCAI brings together tribes from across Indian country to work together in a spirit of unity. Chairman Cladoosby has exceptional skills in bringing together Tribal and nontribal interests to develop innovative policies that protect Tribal sovereignty and promote education and understanding throughout. He is a great asset to NCAI.”
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Indian Gaming Update
Members of the NCAI’s Youth Commission.
NATIONAL CONGRESS OF AMERICAN INDIANS YOUTH LUNCHEON YOUNG LEADERS FROM ALL OVER INDIAN COUNTRY ARE RECOGNIZED FOR THEIR ACADEMIC AND CREATIVE ACHIEVEMENTS.
At the National Congress of American Indians, 70th Annual Convention, Chairman Stevens presented awards to young deserving leaders at the Youth Honoring Luncheon. The luncheon, held on the 2nd day of the convention, honors our young leaders. This award ceremony was established several years ago, by the youth commission that Chairman Stevens helped create by resolution with other tribal leaders many years ago. The young leaders in attendance were committed to tackling the challenges facing Indian country today and to taking on leadership roles both at home and on a national level. Oneida Nation Councilman Brandon Stevens and NIGA Chairman Ernest Stevens, Jr. presented Tyler Owens, David Colbert, Jarred Winchester, and Alex Wesaw with the Ernest L. Stevens Award at the Youth Honoring Luncheon. They were selected for the hard work they displayed serving on NCAI’s youth commission throughout the year. The youth commissioners present were all part of a
powerful working group of young people standing together side by side with Native leaders. “I am so proud of all of them,” said Chairman Stevens. This commission offers youth ages 16-23 the opportunity to engage along with tribal leaders on a national scale to address the issues facing Indian Country. Established in 1997, the NCAI Youth Commission has been a place for tribal youth to come together and discuss solutions to the unique challenges they face within their communities. Chairman Stevens remarked, “To the young people in this room, we empower you to be part of this entire experience and have a voice in the room. Working side by side with the leadership so you can bring what you’ve learned here this week back to your communities and make positive change. It is your responsibility to inspire and set the example for other young Native youth.” In addition to implementing a number of yearround, NCAI strives to support events, which bring youth together on a national scale and to celebrate youth achievements.
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“THE GREATEST” HOSTS MUHAMMAD ALI HUMANITARIAN AWARDS CEREMONY MUHAMMAD ALI AWARDS FORMER PRESIDENT CARTER, MUSICIANS AND OTHER LEADERS AT INAUGURAL AWARDS.
Louisville, KT (October 3, 2013) – National Indian Gaming Association Chairman; Ernie Stevens, Jr., had the privilege to meet “The Greatest,” Muhammad Ali at the Ali Center for Ali’s Annual Humanitarian Awards Ceremony. The President and CEO; Donald Lassere, of the Ali Center stated; “Muhammad’s greatness extends far beyond a boxing ring, he is a great humanitarian. Ali fights for social justice and peace throughout the world.” Prior to the presentations of the prestigious awards to former U.S. President Jimmy Carter, musician Christina Aguilera, singer Michael Bolton and several other Leaders from throughout the country, for their Humanitarian efforts in their communities; the Chairman had the honor of spending a few minutes with Ali one on one. The Chairman told Ali; “Indian Country loves and admires you and stands by everything that your foundation and humanitarian awards promote. Your courage now and throughout your life has inspired us and gives us a continuing source of strength in building a better future for our families and our communities. Indian Country looks forward to being a partner of your foundations efforts in the future.” The Chairman gifted Ali with a traditional bolo; of which he clasped and held firmly during their time together and throughout the remainder of his time meeting and greeting other guests at the event. The Chairman could sense Ali’s appreciation as they looked each other in the eye, even though the Parkinson’s disease he suffers from does not allow him to speak, the Chairman knew the champ heard him and was touched by the words and the gift the Chairman shared with him on behalf of all of Indian Country. The Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Awards are presented to persons who have devoted their lives to peace and social justice, thereby, inspiring others to do great things in their communities and countries; just as we recognize the many Native American Leaders, men and women alike, which have served their Tribal Nations and Communities. Six core principles have guided Ali in his life and now guide the work of his foundation. The principles are: Confidence, Conviction, Dedication, Giving, Respect and Spirituality. Ali is a pioneer when it comes to transcending athleticism into a symbol of peace and well being not only in his own life, but also in our nation and in the world.
(Above) Chairman Stevens with Laila Ali. (Below) Muhammad Ali holds a bolo tie gifted from Chairman Stevens at the Humanitarian Awards Ceremony. Photos by Wales Hunter.
Native People from all over this country look up to Ali as a humanitarian who fights for all. The Chairman reflected, “While I was listing the Tribes and Regions that I represent on behalf of the National Indian Gaming Association, I could sense from his eyes that he knew that I was speaking for Indian Country and he realized how much we love and respect the ‘fighter’ in him.”
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