Jeff Harmon (’05) Chosen for Bar Leadership Program

Fifteen Attorneys Chosen for Bar Leadership Program

PHOENIX — August 21, 2008 — The State Bar of Arizona has named 15 attorneys to its annual Bar Leadership Institute, a one-year program designed to foster the professional growth and enhance the leadership skills of a diverse group of Arizona attorneys

The attorneys participating in the class are:
* Wendy Akbar, Quarles & Brady LLP, Phoenix
* Jessica Benford, Ryley Carlock & Applewhite, Phoenix
* Flynn Carey, Gallagher & Kennedy PA, Phoenix
* Ann Marie Chischilly, Gila Indian River Community, Chandler
* Franci Fealk, Kutak Rock LLP, Scottsdale
* Jeffery Harmon, Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community, Scottsdale
* Isaac Hernandez, Steptoe & Johnson LLP, Phoenix
* Mingyi Kang, Gust Rosenfeld PLC, Phoenix
* Jennifer Larson, Gust Rosenfeld PLC, Phoenix
* Tamara Mulembo, Pima County Public Defender’s Office, Tucson
* Zarinah Nadir, Arizona State University, Mesa
* Sonia Nayeri, Jones Skelton & Hochuli PLC, Phoenix
* Anita Simons, Pima County Attorney’s Office, Phoenix
* Michael Somsan, Community Legal Services, Phoenix
* Nina Targovnik, Community Legal Services, Phoenix

Beginning in September, the attorneys will attend monthly programs in leadership, ethics and career development. Throughout the year, participants will also have the opportunity to meet with judges, Congressional representatives, lobbyists and in-house counsel to experience the diversity of the legal profession.

Following completion of the first year, participants must commit to one year of participation in a State Bar committee or section and/or another bar association or community organization.

Christopher Clark Deschene (’05) – District 2 Winner

Chabin retains House seat for Flag

J. FERGUSON Sun Staff Reporter Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Flagstaff will keep one local representative in the gerrymandered Legislative District 2, and it will be the incumbent, state Rep. Tom Chabin, D-Flagstaff. Chabin finished second in a three-person primary race to select two House members from LD2, which includes the city of the Flagstaff and the much larger Navajo Nation. The leading vote-getter was Christopher Clark Deschene, a Window Rock attorney. Finishing third and out of the running was Flagstaff contractor Mark Haughwout. Because there are no Republicans on the November ballot, Chabin and Deschene are virtually assured of election.

In the Senate Republican primary in Legislative District 1, another gerrymandered district that includes the unincorporated communities around Flagstaff but is centered in Yavapai County, veteran lawmaker Tom O’Halleran lost his seat to Prescott rancher Steve Pierce. Because there are no Democrats on the November ballot, Pierce has the seat virtually locked up.

BUDGET THE TOP CONCERN Speaking from his home on the Rez with his wife an infant son watching the polls over the Internet, Deschene said he was thrilled with the results.”We are very excited here, there is a lot of energy here,” Deschene said, He said concerns on how to balance the budget on during an economic downturn without cutting vital services would be his primary concern when taking office in January. “The budget is my number one concern,” he said. “Once we get a handle on that we can focus on a number of issues important to northern Arizona. “Deschene said he hoped to focus on water and environmental issues during his first year in office.

Chabin said he was appreciative that the voters would send him back to the Legislature.”I’m very grateful. I’ve enjoyed working in the Legislature for about a year and serving as a member of the House,” Chabin said. “Winning the election in my own right makes me very, very grateful.”Top priorities next session: Education, health care and funding mental health services. He said funding would be the biggest hurdle.”For the state of Arizona to step up to the challenges of adequately funding education,” Chabin said.Chabin proposes taking funding question to the voters.He said with the loss of O’Halleran he will need to work harder in finding allies in the Republican Party for legislation.”We’re going to have to work harder to seek moderation and reaching across the isle. This is certainly true if Sen. O’Halleran does not win his election” he said.

LABELED AN OUTSIDER Haughwout was labeled an outsider in the Democratic Party, dropped from campaign literature and not invited to some party functions after launching a legal challenge against both Deschene and state Rep. Albert Tom. At issue were the addresses used on nominating petition signatures for the candidates, and the challenge eventually led to Tom dropping out of the race when he conceded he did not have enough valid signatures. Deschene survived the legal challenge. Haughwout’s challenge to signatures mostly gathered on the Rez seemingly backfired as Haughwout’s campaign got less than 15 percent of the votes on the Rez.

NO NEW LAWS In Senate District 1, O’Halleran became a target of some Republicans who question his loyalty to the party and asked Pierce to run against the former Chicago police officer. Pierce outspent O’Halleran by a wide margin, $226,145 compared to $68,240.Pierce said during the campaign he had no intention of writing any new laws.”I’m for less government,” Pierce said in an August interview.He said the Legislature writes too many bills and he would avoid introducing new legislation if possible.Pierce was not available for comment Tuesday night.

LD2-HouseDemocratic Primary




LD1-SenateRepublican Primary



Humetewa on Native American Calling

U.S. Attorney Diane Humetewa:
scheduled guest for Native America Calling
Tuesday, Sept. 9, 2008
The show will be broadcast on KUYI, HOPI radio at 10 am Arizona time and on KGHR – Tuba City at 11am Daylight Savings time . You can also listen on-line at at the same times.

Native in the Spotlight Diane Humetewa:
U.S. Attorneys are federal prosecutors who represent the U.S. government in the federal courts. Each U.S. Attorney is the chief federal law enforcement officer within his or her particular jurisdiction. Last December Diane Humetewa (Hopi) was sworn in as U.S. Attorney for the District of Arizona, marking the first time an American Indian woman has been appointed as a U.S. Attorney. Her office prosecutes violent crimes such as sexual assault and homicide, as well as drug trafficking, fraud, and bank robbery. The Arizona district includes 21 Indian reservations. What’s it like being a real life, modern day crime fighter?

JOBS: Attorney Northern Arapaho Tribe

Northern Arapaho Tribe
Notice of Employment
TRIBAL IV-D Attorney

The Tribal IV-D Attorney is the staff attorney for the office of Child Support Enforcement. The Attorney provides all legal work necessary for or related to the establishment, modification and enforcement of child support obligations done by the Office of Child support.
Pre-Employment Drug Screening and Background check required.
Salary: $76,960
Opening: August 18, 2008
Closing: September 12, 2008

How to apply:
Send a complete Northern Arapaho Tribal Application and resume with letter of interest to Northern Arapaho Tribe:
Attn: Human Resources: P.O. Box 396, Fort Washakie, WY, 82514
or submit in person to Human Resources located at the Tribal Complex Building, 533 Ethete Road, Ethete WY.

Full job descriptions and applications for emloyment can be found at Click on Human Resources to view the job descriptions and to print the application from the PDF file. For more information you can email us at or call 307 332 6120 ext 159

Navajo Nation Supreme Court Oral Arguments

Navajo Nation Supreme Court Oral Arguments
Ford Motor Co. v. Kayenta District Court

Thursday, September 18, 2008
10:30 AM — Noon
Great Hall, Sandra Day O’Connor College Of Law

Proper courtroom etiquette must be observed at all times.
Please note that law students have priority seating.

Case Summary
The case concerns Ford Motor Company’s request that the Navajo Nation Supreme Court prevent the Kayenta District Court from hearing a wrongful death case brought by the Todecheene family. The Todecheenes brought the case on behalf of a Navajo police officer who died in a rollover accident on the Navajo Reservation while driving a Navajo Nation police vehicle manufactured by Ford. The Todecheenes allege the vehicle was defective, and seek damages from Ford. The Nation purchased the vehicle from a Ford dealership located in Gallup, New Mexico, a town located outside the Navajo Reservation. The purchase was financed by Ford Motor Credit, a subsidiary of Ford.

Ford argues that the Navajo courts lack jurisdiction to hear the case under Federal Indian law principles. The Kayenta District Court ruled that it had jurisdiction over the lawsuit. Instead of seeking review by the Navajo Supreme Court, Ford filed an action in the federal district court of Arizona to enjoin the Navajo courts from hearing the case. The federal district court ruled there was no jurisdiction, based on United States Supreme Court precedent on the scope of tribal jurisdiction over non-Indians. The Navajo Nation appealed the ruling, and the Ninth Circuit initially affirmed the district court, agreeing that the Navajo courts lacked jurisdiction. However, the Ninth Circuit later vacated that ruling and required Ford to seek review by the Navajo Supreme Court on one issue: whether the Navajo Nation could assert jurisdiction under the second exception of the United States Supreme Court case Montana v. United States, 450 U.S. 544 (1981). That exception recognizes tribal jurisdiction if the actions of a non-Indian “threatens or has some direct effect on the political integrity, the economic security, or the health or welfare of the tribe.” Id. at 566. The Navajo Nation Supreme Court further asked the parties to discuss whether the Treaty of 1868 between the Nation and the United States independently allows the Nation’s courts to hear the case. Finally, the Court requested that the parties brief the Court on the effect, if any, of a recent United States Supreme Court opinion on tribal jurisdiction, Plains Commerce Bank v. Long Family Land & Cattle Co. The Navajo Nation Department of Justice and Susan Rose, a private attorney, filed amicus briefs in the case.

For more information contact:
Kate Rosier at 480-965-6204 or Email

Article by Katosha Nakai (’03)

Katosha Belvin Nakai (’03) of Lewis and Roca LLP has an article featured in Arizona’s Environmental and Natural Resources Law Section Update August 2008. “Penny-Wise or Pound Foolish: Business Investment in the Implementation of a Tribal Superfund law” can be found on page 4 of the update.