"History has shown that failure to include the voices of tribal officials in formulating policy affecting their communities has all too often led to undesirable and, at times, devastating and tragic results. By contrast, meaningful dialogue between Federal officials and tribal officials has greatly improved Federal policy toward Indian tribes. Consultation is a critical ingredient of a sound and productive Federal-tribal relationship."
President Barack Obama
Presidential Memorandum, November 5, 2009
Native American Affairs
The Senior Adviser's various missions include:
- Tribal Liaison—coordinating and communicating all Native American / Indian Country issues directly with Tribes and across all the bureaus within Commerce as well as externally with all other federal agencies;
- Tribal Consultation Policy—coordinating and implementing Commerce’s Tribal Consultation Policy Plan and consultation sessions. Serves as the primary contact for all Tribal Consultation actions and issues;
- Economic Development—serves as the facilitator of the Office of Native American Business Development by assisting and consulting with Indian Country in leveraging the combined efforts of the federal programs, tribal governments, private sector businesses and financing in order to promote economic growth for Tribes and Native Americans.
- Executive Order 13175
- Written transcriptions from each of the Commerce Department’s Tribal Consultation and Coordination Policy are available for review. For a copy of the September 12th or September 19th 2012 written transcript please e-mail Dee Alexander, Senior Adviser on Native American Affairs at dalexander[at]doc[dot]gov.
- The Commerce Department’s next steps are to have its working team review the comments and recommendations received from the webinars. This working team is comprised of representatives from operating units that work with the American Indian and Alaska Native populations. They will address each comment and recommendation and develop the final policy. The Department’s goal is to have the final policy, comments and recommendations published in the Federal Register by the end of 2012. The final policy will be sent to all the federally-recognized tribes and to those who participated in the webinars.
- Economic Development Administration
- Minority Business Development Agency
- International Trade Administration
National Oceanic and Atmospherica Administration
U.S. Census Bureau
- U.S. Bureau of the Census
- American Indian and Alaska Native Resources
- American Indians and Alaska Natives 2010 Census brief
- 2010 Census
Department of Commerce Tribal Consultation Policy Plan Update April 2012
In accordance with E.O. No. 13175 and President Obama’s 2009 Memorandum, the Department participated in tribal consultation sessions with tribal governments at national and regional meetings in Indian Country. Written comments and input received from tribal representatives were instrumental in the development of the Department’s policy, “Department of Commerce Tribal Consultation and Coordination Policy” (“Policy”).
The Policy establishes the manner in which the Department works with Indian tribes on a government-to-government basis. This policy outlines consultation procedures for all Department operating units when developing policies that have tribal implications.
The Department will be conducting a series of national tribal consultation webinars to seek final input and review once the draft Policy is released for public comment. The webinars are projected to take place in the summer 2012. The final Policy is projected to be in place by late fall 2012. Federally-recognized tribes will receive a letter from the Secretary and an e-mail notification from Dee Alexander, Senior Advisor on Native American Affair when the draft Policy is released for public comment. The draft Policy will also be published in the Federal Register and a contact will be provided for public comments.
As required by E.O. 13175, the Department will submit its third progress report this fall (August 2012) to the Office of Management and Budget. The progress report updates the Department’s plan (October 2010).
Department of Commerce Tribal Consultation Policy Plan (October 2010)