ASU to host Tribal Government Leadership Forum

The Arizona State University Office of Public Affairs will host elected tribal leaders and key staff in a two-day Tribal Government Leadership Forum to discuss the wide-ranging roles and responsibilities that come with governing distinct and sovereign nations.

This year’s Tribal Government Leadership Forum (TGLF) will be held Feb. 21-22 at ASU Tempe’s campus.

“The Tribal Government Leadership Forum brings together outstanding respected leaders who share their experience, stories and wisdom with the next generation of elected leaders,” says Ivan Makil, former president of the Salt River Pima Maricopa Indian Community. “The forum is also an opportunity for tribal leadership to step back and reflect on what is truly important when guiding their respective nations.”

This year’s keynote speaker is Chad Smith, the former Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation from 1999-2011. During Smith’s tenure the Cherokee Nation significantly grew its assets, increased healthcare services, created 6,000 jobs, and advanced education, language and cultural preservation.

The tribal leadership program was developed by Makil, who recognized the need for a program tailored specifically for leadership challenges of tribal governments. The original program, American Indian Newly Elected Officials, was established in 2005.

The program includes sessions on the history of federal Indian policy, roles and responsibilities, intergovernmental relations, legislation, and economic stability in challenging times. Participants will discuss strategies that can enrich their own lives and the lives of the people and communities they serve.

Registration information for this year’s program can be found at