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Spotlight on Commerce: Dee Alexander, Senior Adviser on Native American Affairs

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Dee Alexander, Senior Advisor on Native American Affairs

On December 19, 2011 Secretary of Commerce John Bryson appointed Dee Alexander as his Senior Adviser on Native American Affairs. As the Department’s Tribal Consultation Official, Alexander’s principal responsibility is implementing the Department’s Tribal Coordination and Consultation Policy, per President Obama’s Executive Order 13175 (PDF), which ensures meaningful and timely input by tribal officials in the development of policies that have tribal implications.

Alexander works closely with the Minority Business Development Agency and other Commerce bureaus to promote the Secretary’s vision for job creation and economic growth on American Indian and Alaska Native communities. As the Senior Adviser on Native American Affairs, Alexander is housed in the Secretary’s Office of Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs.

While speaking at the National Congress of American Indians 2012 Executive Council, Secretary Bryson noted that one of his goals as Secretary of Commerce is to expand the relationship that already exists between the Department and Tribal Nations.

“This administration is committed to strengthening the government-to-government relationship between the United States and Indian Country. That’s why I am pleased to have Dee Alexander, a member of the Cheyenne-Arapaho Tribe, join the team as my senior adviser for Native American Affairs,” Bryson said. “Dee’s leadership has already been critical in shaping Census policy that recognizes the important place of Native Americans in the United States. I am confident that she will continue to work to create economic opportunities for all Americans, including First Americans.”

Prior to this appointment, Alexander was with the Census Bureau for 10 years, developing and executing policies aimed at building durable relationships with American Indian tribes on a government-to-government basis. Her work included ensuring these relationships supported tribes in the development of strong and stable economies and compete in the global marketplace.

Alexander began her Commerce career in 1998 at the Census Bureau’s Kansas City Regional Office, where she was responsible for developing partnerships primarily with federal, state, local and tribal governments for pre-census and Census 2000 promotion activities. Alexander moved to Census headquarters in 2005 to work on Decennial Census operations. She chaired the Census 2010 American Indian and Alaska Native Working Team.

In between her two tenures with the Census, she served as Executive Director for Red Earth, Inc. an Oklahoma City based non-profit organization that includes an Indian museum with American Indian educational programs.

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