Impacting the next gen

This past semester ILP Executive Director and Assistant Dean of Institutional Progress Kate Rosier and Assistant Dean Ray English of ASU Law’s Office of Career and Employment Service joined forces to co-teach an undergraduate course LAW 394: Law School Foundations. The course was created to provide students with the opportunity to explore and develop the skills necessary to apply to law school and succeed in law school. This diverse roster took part in an intensive LSAT preparation course, and students learned about the law school application process and application strategies. They were also given the opportunity to network with law school administrators, law students, lawyers and judges. 

“I feel like the course provided students with a great foundation upon which to develop their critical thinking skills and to pursue admission into law school,” said English. “My favorite memories surround oral arguments. Students did amazingly well, considering many had never made an oral argument before.”

Over the course of the semester, the students were exposed to legal constructions of the courts in the United States and Arizona, including the function of courts and judges. Students participated in legal analysis exercises, draft legal memorandums and made oral arguments.

“It was a rewarding experience to work with talented and motivated students in the class,” said Rosier. “It was fun to demystify the law school admissions process and direct them with helpful tips.”

The course was initially designed to be in-person but due to a global pandemic, Rosier and English quickly took action and reworked the course to meet the needs of the students. By the end of the semester, they realized the course exceeded their expectations. “Kate and I make a great team! I am looking forward to working with her to improve the course.”

“I think the biggest accomplishment is that all of the students attended every session, even though I made everyone turn on their cameras,” he said. By the end of the semester, two students secured summer internships with Honorable David B. Gass of the Arizona Court of Appeals, Division One.

This course was based on the course previously taught by Jeremiah Chin (’15) and Dr. Bryan Brayboy. We appreciate their great work and forward thinking.    

NABA-AZ Scholarship Winners

Ten ASU NALSA students received the NABA-AZ Scholarship for their academic achievement. Congratulations to all the recipients, especially our ILP students: Mariah Black Bird (3L), Brendan Clark (3L), Hilary Edwards (2L), Dallon Echo Hawk (2L), Brittany Habbart (1L), Michael LaValley (1L), Aspen Miller (3L), Taylor Norman (2L), McArthur Stant II (3L) and Ruben Zendejas (1L). 

Thank you to NABA-AZ for continuing to support Arizona law students, especially during the pandemic.

NABA-AZ will recognize all the scholarship winners on March 26 at Noon during a virtual event. Please join the event and celebrate our outstanding students.

2021 Pipeline to Law: Online Sessions

The Native American Pipeline to Law Pre-Law team will be hosting Online Sessions this summer. These sessions will help students successfully navigate the law school application process. It doesn’t matter which school you are coming from and which school you choose, we want to help you get there.

  • Develop an effective application, resume, and personal statement
  • Explore law school funding options
  • Receive test prep tips for the LSAT
  • Hear from former and current American Indian law students

Apply by May 3. Spots fill up fast!

Submit your application at: law.asu.edu/pipelinetolaw

Progress, Power, Purpose: Kate Rosier

Women's History Month

In celebrating “Women’s History Month,” we turned to some of the women of the ILP to shed light on Native women legal professionals and advocates in this Progress, Power, Purpose series. There’s something special to be said about ILP Director Kate Rosier who was recently appointed to Assistant Dean of Institutional Progress, the name is so fitting. Fostering talent and shaping the future one conversation at a time is this Comanche woman’s talent—ask any ILP alum and current student. Her most recent and proven work is in the Native American Pipeline to Law Initiative, which is comprised of three dedicated partners. In its seventh year, the Native American Pipeline to Law team is proud to host Pipeline to Law Online Sessions this summer.

For most of the ILP Family who address her as Katie Bear or Momma Bear Kate, Dean Rosier has also been addressed as Professor this year. For the first time in her career, she is co-teaching an undergraduate course, Law 394: Law School Foundations, with Assistant Dean Ray English at ASU Law.  Providing so many students with opportunities to achieve greatness is her bread and butter!

Q: What does your current position entail?
A: I’m the official Momma Bear of the ILP. I help to recruit and retain students and make sure the students have a nice experience while in law school. I also help with grant writing, development, alumni relations, partnerships, programming and communications for the program. 

Q: Were you always interested in this kind of work?
A: No. After I passed the bar, I started working for Gila River’s Law office. In 2000, I was contacted by my former law professor and (then) Dean of ASU Law Trish White and Professor Tsosie about joining the ILP team. I had a business background and had worked with incoming students at University of Utah so it seemed like a good fit. Thinking back on it now, I kind of grew up in this position. 

Q: What advice do you have for Native American women who want to work in this area?
A: Working as a law school administrator has been awesome for me and my family. I am able to stay connected to the law, help diversify the profession while balancing the demands of family. I think this might be a dream job. 

Q: What is your proudest career moment?
A: I have proud career moments every time I see ILP students do something awesome in Indian Country. I see them as babies and then they graduate and help change the world. Very cool.

Q: Who are three Native American women law professionals and/or advocates who should be on our radar right now? 
A:
Who can name just 3!?

  • I’m inspired by Patty and Stacy. They are smart, professional, fun and always wanting to give back to Indian Country.
  • I’m in awe of our female attorneys leading tribal legal teams: Jennifer Giff and Theresa Rosier (Salt River), Debra Gee (Chickasaw), Diandra Benally (Fort McDowell), Doreen McPaul and Kim Dutcher (Navajo) and Ann Marie Bledsoe Downes (Deputy Solicitor for Indian Affairs).
  • Kristin Theis-Alvarez (Berkeley Admissions/Pipeline to law team member) Kristin is now the dean of admissions at Berkeley law. She has been working hard at Berkeley, the Native American Pathways to Law Program, Graduate Horizons, and with LSAC to help diversify the profession. She is smart, confident, stylish and full of sass.
  • Rodina Cave Parnall (Director of PLSI) Rodina had big shoes to fill taking over for Heidi Nesbit. She didn’t try to be Heidi. She stepped in and made the role her own. She has been great with the students and tried to think of creative new ways to support future lawyers before, after and during law school. I appreciate the patience she has with students and her willingness to think about what each student needs.
  • The many students and young grads of ILP. I know I recruited them but WOW! They are so smart and talented. I can’t wait to see what they will do next. The future is bright.
  • I’m also inspired by all the lawyer moms balancing everything well. The law is a tough field and they are getting it done while having kids, parents, partners, pets and extended family to keep happy. Bravo!

Q: In your career, did you ever feel like the lone Native American voice in the room? How did you overcome those adversities? For that girl/woman who is finding her rhythm and trying to carve out a space to thrive, what advice would you give her?
A: Remember your law degree and bar license is just as valuable as theirs. Do not let people make you feel less than. 

Q: Favorite law school memory:
A: Attending PLSI before the start of law school was my favorite time. It was so powerful to be surrounded by native students on the same journey. I met my future sister-in-law and best friend at the program. WE had fun, worked hard and learned so much. I’ll always be grateful for my time there. PS – The class of 1995 was the best class of all time. 

Review Kate’s accolades:

  •  “ASU Law announces new leadership positions” in ASU News article.
  • Kate received the Council on Legal Education Opportunity Inc.’s EDGE Award for exhibiting “Education, Diversity and Greater Equality in the legal profession” in November 2018.

Stay tuned for our next Progress, Power, Purpose series.

________

Danielle Williams
Program Coordinator, Indian Legal Program, ASU Law

Celebrating Women’s History Month: Progress, Power, Purpose

Life in a pandemic has not been easy for any of us but we remain resilient and stand strong. While political changes are shifting with the new Biden-Harris Administration, we recognize history in the making. Congresswoman Deb Haaland is front and center as a reminder of women in their power. In celebrating “Women’s History Month,” we turned to some of the women of the Indian Legal Program to shed light on women legal professionals and advocates in this Progress, Power, Purpose series. Starting with ILP’s powerhouse lady leads, Executive Director Kate Rosier who was recently appointed as Assistant Dean of Institutional Progress at ASU Law and Faculty Director and Indian Legal Clinic Director Patty Ferguson-Bohnee.

In spite of these tumultuous times, ILP’s lady leads have not skipped a beat. In fact, they have greatly expanded and transformed the digital media scene from offering free CLE virtual events (McGirt webinar is still ASU Law’s largest webinar attended) to increased collaborative partnerships. Since the law school reopened its doors to the administration and began offering hybrid courses in August 2020, these lady leads are in their offices every week with their doors open to current and prospective students, and teaching their respective classes. All in the name of good service. 

As a program led by Native women, we want to celebrate our women who are serving their communities, holding seats at the tables of governance, strategizing to secure victories, blazing trails and setting a tone for the generation of Native women to follow. 

Read their stories in the Progress, Power, Purpose series:

  • Kate Rosier, Director and Assistant Dean of Institutional Progress
  • Patty Ferguson-Bohnee, Faculty Director & ILC Director
  • Ann Marie Bledsoe Downes (’94), Professor of Practice and Indian Gaming & Tribal Self-Governance Programs Director
  • Stacy Leeds, Foundation Professor of Law and Leadership
  • Honorable Diane Humetewa (’93), Professor of Practice
  • Helen Burtis (’07), Faculty Associate
  • Breann Swann Nu’uhiwa (’09), Faculty Associate
  • Torey Dolan (’19), Native Vote Fellow
  • Jennifer Giff (’95), Advisory Council
  • April Olson (’06), Advisory Council
  • Nikki Borchardt Campbell (’09), Advisory Council
  • Judith Dworkin (ASU Law ’86),  Advisory Council
  • Maria Dadgar, Advisory Council
  • Claudeen Bates Arthur (’74)
  • Gloria Kindig (’89)
  • Diane Enos (’92)
  • Debra Gee (’94)
  • Doreen Nanibaa McPaul (’01)
  • Lydelle Davies (’02)
  • Diandra Benally (’05)

Stay tuned for more updates to celebrate Women’s History Month.

Note: Photo cover of Kate and Patty were photographed separately with full safety measures and edited post-production.

________

Content creator & photo credit: Danielle Williams
Program Coordinator, Indian Legal Program, ASU Law

Progress, Power, Purpose: Patty Ferguson-Bohnee

Women's History Month

In celebrating “Women’s History Month,” we turned to some of the women of the ILP to shed light on Native women legal professionals and advocates in this Progress, Power, Purpose series. Indian Legal Program Faculty Director, Indian Legal Clinic Director and Professor of Law at ASU Law Patty Ferguson-Bohnee is of the Pointe-au-Chien tribe from Louisiana. In addition to teaching, this formidable force is most known for her continued work on the Arizona Native Vote Election Protection Project, which did Indian Country a great service in the 2020 presidential election, moving closer to a democracy that honors and values Native voters. While the pandemic was not an ideal circumstance, Native Vote took to digital media by storm with interviews, trainings, presentations, collaborations and most notably, the newly created Polling Locator Tool. Read more in Arizona Native Vote Changemakers.

When she’s not leading the charge in Native Vote, Patty is preparing students in her Indian Legal Clinic and promoting diversity and inclusion.

Q: What does your current position entail?
A:
I serve as the Director of the Indian Legal Clinic and Faculty Director of the Indian Legal Program at the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at ASU.  I am so blessed to be able to work with leading scholars and practitioners in Indian law and Tribal law and motivated students who really care about serving Indian Country.  In the Indian Legal Clinic, the students practice under my bar license.  We work on matters in tribal, state, federal, and international forums.  The cases range from probate, family, criminal and civil litigation, voting rights, code drafting, environment, climate, and status clarification of tribes. My goal is that the students learn useful practical skills and develop a passion for service, while also serving unmet needs for Indian Country.

Q: Were you always interested in this kind of work? 
A: I became interested in law when I participated in mock trial in high school.  However, I became interested in Indian law as an undergraduate student.  I was able to take a Federal Indian Law class as a freshman, and I never looked back. 

Q: What advice do you have for Native American women who want to work in this area? 
A: The sky is the limit!  Although Native American women are the most underrepresented group in the legal profession, Native American women are doing phenomenal work.  Keep in touch with your law school classmates and build a community of support.  Join your local Native American Bar Association and the National Native American Bar Association.   

Q: What is your proudest career moment? 
A: Assisting Four Louisiana Tribes in securing state recognition. 

Q: Is there anything you’ve learned after graduating law school that you wished you learned in class? 
A: Many law students do not learn that there are three sovereigns—the state, the feds, and tribes.  While this might not be harmful in some states, in the southwest, it could lead to malpractice.  It also means that as Native lawyers and practitioners of tribal law and Federal Indian law, we are always teaching—the judges, opposing counsel, co-workers, clients, and others.  At ASU, it is great to have Indian law professors teach first year courses so that they can provide this lens in which to analyze the law.  It makes us all better attorneys and advocates.  Everyone should learn Indian law basics because it transcends all areas of law. 

Q: What is the most valuable lesson you learned in the classroom that has helped you in your career? 
A: I took a few practical courses that served me well. One was environmental litigation, which included drafting briefs and an appellate argument.  The other was mediation clinic, which taught me to listen and provided me tools to help resolve disagreements.   

Q: Who are three Native American women law professionals and/or advocates who should be on our radar right now?

  • Hilary Tompkins: a strong Native American woman, a leader, the first Native American to serve as the Solicitor of the Interior, and someone who has remained humble and genuine.  She is expanding her knowledge base and using this an opportunity to rethink and reframe Indian law issues.  She gave a thoughtful and powerful lecture at last year’s annual Canby Lecture, and I appreciated the time she spent with our students.   
  • Deb Haaland: If confirmed, Deb Haaland will be the first Native American ever appointed to a cabinet position.  Her views on climate change are important to the future of Tribal communities, and the whole country.   
  • Doreen McPaul (’01): Doreen has served in numerous positions – academia, private law firms, tribal in-house counsel, counsel to tribal leadership, and now, Attorney General of the Navajo Nation. Through this journey, she has volunteered, served on numerous boards and bar leadership, speaks on numerous panels, and coordinates educational programs about Indian law and tribal law. She is also the president and founding board member of the Tribal In-House Counsel Association – a much needed forum to support tribal in-house attorneys and advocates. 

Review Patty’s publications:

  • Received the American Bar Association’s 2020 Spirit of Excellence award
  • “How the Native American Vote Continues to be Suppressed” article published in the ABA Vol. 45, No. 1: Voting Rights.
  • Co-authored with James Tucker article “Voting During a Pandemic Vote-By-Mail Challenges for Native Voters”
  • “The History of Indian Voting Rights in Arizona: Overcoming Decades of Voter Suppression” SSRN article
  • “The Impacts of Coastal Erosion on Tribal Cultural Heritage” article published in the SSRN.

Continue to Progress, Power, Purpose series.

________

Danielle Williams
Program Coordinator, Indian Legal Program, ASU Law

Progress, Power, Purpose: Doreen Nanibaa McPaul (’01)

Women's History Month

In celebrating “Women’s History Month,” we turned to some of the women of the ILP to shed light on Native women legal professionals and advocates in this Progress, Power, Purpose series. Native women have been making history since the beginning of time and this Navajo woman of the Kinyaa’aanii clan has armed herself with extensive legal and government knowledge: clerked at the Arizona Court of Appeals, worked as a staff attorney for the Navajo Nation Judicial Branch, former associate attorney at the Nordhaus Law Firm, served as a visiting clinical law professor and Interim Director of ASU Law’s Indian Legal Clinic and now, back to working with her people on the Navajo Nation.

Q: What does your current position entail?

A: I am the Navajo Nation Attorney General. In that capacity, I serve as the Nation’s Chief Legal Officer and oversee the Nation’s Department of Justice, including the Office of the Prosecutor and the Navajo Hopi Legal Services Program. The Department of Justice is charged with providing legal representation to the Navajo Nation government, including the 3 Branches of government, the various Executive Branch Departments and Divisions, and the 110 local governing Chapters.

Q: Were you always interested in this kind of work?
A: I knew I wanted to practice Indian law and work with tribal entities. I’ve now worked as an attorney for tribal governments for 13 years and also I have chaired a national organization committed to the work of tribal government attorneys for 8 years.

Q: What advice do you have for Native American women who want to work in this area?
A: Working as an in-house attorney is challenging and rewarding. I actually left my law firm job when I was expecting my first child because I was convinced that I couldn’t be a good mom and a good billable law firm lawyer. I thought I had to choose. I also didn’t have any role models at the time to know that there are some seriously amazing women who are doing both! The blessing in disguise though is that I discovered my passion working as a tribal government attorney.

Q: What is your proudest career moment?
A: Being appointed as Attorney General for my own tribe.

Q: Is there anything you’ve learned after graduating law school that you wished you learned in class?
A: I wish I’d taken a clinical course. So much of what we do requires practical knowledge and skills. I did take Professor Robert Clinton’s tribal government class and got to draft a juvenile code with Judge Flies Away for a tribe in Minnesota. It was a profoundly rewarding and practical experience.

Q: What is the most valuable lesson you learned in the classroom that has helped you in your career?
A:
Professor Rebecca Tsosie encouraged me to try out for law review and to apply for a judicial clerkship – opportunities that I didn’t know existed and that I would not have sought without her encouragement. I did try out for law review and served as a staff writer my 3L year, and I also applied for a clerkship and was selected for one with the Arizona Court of Appeals for post-law school. It made my 3L year and studying for the bar easier knowing I had a job lined up.

Q: Who are three Native American women law professionals and/or advocates who should be on our radar right now?
A: There are so many amazing Native women legal professionals doing amazing work across Indian country who we all know and love. One who should be on everyone’s radar is Paulene Abeyta. She is a 3L at the University of Arizona and currently serves as the President of National NALSA. She is Navajo, she is a military spouse, she is a mom, and she’s an incredible human being. Amber Holland is another to have on the radar. She is Lumbee, a UNM law grad, and just finished a gig at NCAI and will join the Big Fire law firm. Paulene and Amber are going to be wonderful advocates for Indian Country. Last but not least is Lydia Locklear. I serve on a Judicial Clerkship Committee with Lydia and she is impressive! She is Lumbee, a Michigan State law grad, and serves as Deputy Tribal Attorney for the Catawba Nation.

Q: In your career, did you ever feel like the lone Native American voice in the room? How did you overcome those adversities? For that girl/woman who is finding her rhythm and trying to carve out a space to thrive, what advice would you give her?
A: I’ve been the only woman in the room and I’ve also been the only Native American at the table. I’ve also been introduced as the Navajo Nation Attorney General alongside a male colleague, and the person I was introduced to extended a “nice to meet you Mr. Attorney General” to my colleague.

My advice is to be bold, be brave, and know that you deserve a seat at that table and that your perspective, your knowledge, and your skills are valuable. Also, find and surround yourself with support systems of other women who you can rely on for honesty and perspective.

Q: Favorite law school memory.
A: Hanging out in the ILP student break room upstairs at the old law school, and the ILP graduation.

Review Doreen’s publications:

Continue to Progress, Power, Purpose series.

________

Danielle Williams
Program Coordinator, Indian Legal Program, ASU Law

2021 ILP Alumni Awards – Call for Nominations

The ILP alumni awards are now open. Nominate your classmates and friends! The ILP Awards include Professional Achievement, Alumni Service Award, and Emerging Leader Award. Nominations are due March 5, 2021! Nomination materials should be sent by email to: Kate.Rosier@asu.edu. Awards will be presented at the ILP Alumni & Friends Virtual Awards Ceremony. Details for date, time and location will be shared soon.

Nomination Guidelines

ILP Professional Achievement Award – This award recognizes outstanding achievement in Indian Law or Tribal Law throughout an individual’s career. The award honors ILP alumni whose achievements in the field of Indian Law or Tribal Law have brought distinction to themselves and real benefit to the Indian community. Nomination Package Requirements:

  • Describe the unique professional achievements in the field of Indian Law or Tribal Law that has brought distinction to the candidate. (maximum two pages)
  • Describe the recognized contributions made by this candidate that demonstrate a benefit to the larger community. (maximum one page)
  • Describe the ways in which the candidate’s achievements are truly extraordinary or exceptional. (maximum one page)
  • Provide at least two letters of support from individuals that can speak to the candidate’s impact on his or her profession.
  • Letters of support should speak to the magnitude of the individual’s impact in the practice of Indian or tribal law or in the Indian community.
  • Provide a 200 word bio of the nominee.
  • Past winners include: Kathy Bowman (’86), Rob Rosette (’96), Diane Enos (’92), Ben Hanley (’71), Herb Yazzie (’75).

ILP Alumni Service Award – This award is given for outstanding service to the Indian Legal Program, and is awarded for extended, extraordinary service to the Indian Legal Program. Nomination Package Requirements

  • Describe the ways in which the candidate has served or supported the ILP and the ILP alumni. Examples can include serving on committees, boards, CLEs, mentoring ILP students, or other volunteer or fundraising efforts or funding commitments. (maximum one page)
  • Describe the ways this service been truly extraordinary. (maximum one page)
  • Describe how the candidate’s service has benefited the ILP. (maximum one page)
  • Please provide at least two letters of support from ILP alumni as part of the nomination package.
  • Provide a 200 word bio of the nominee.
  • Past winners include: Verrin Kewenvoyouma (’04), Ann Marie Downes (’94), Mary Shirley (’92) and Jeff Harmon (’05)

ILP Emerging Leader Award – This award acknowledges and encourages service to Indian Country and the ILP by alumni who are less than ten years out of law school. The award recognizes outstanding achievements in their professional career, volunteer work, and promotion or support of the ILP and/or ASU NALSA. Nomination Package Requirements.

  • Describe how the candidate has achieved professional success in their legal career.
  • Describe the candidate’s volunteer work.
  • Describe how the candidate achieved an exceptional level of service while balancing the demands of being a recent graduate. (maximum one page)
  • Describe how the candidate was proactive in efforts to become involved in ILP and/or ILP alumni activities. (maximum one page)
  • Describe how the candidate’s service has been sustained over a long period of time or how the service has been innovative or beneficial. (maximum one page)
  • Provide two letters of support from fellow ILP alumni.
  • Provide a 200 word bio of the nominee.
  • Past winners include: Carolyn Angus-Hornbuckle (’09), Nikki Borchardt Campbell (’09), Steve Bodmer (’06), Elizabeth Medicine Crow (’05), Charles Galbraith (’07), Matthew Campbell (’08) and Michael Corey Hinton (’11)

ILP Alumni partnership creates Judicial Clerkship Handbook

The Pre-Law Summer Institute (PLSI) Judicial Clerkship Committee that includes ILP alumni teamed up and created the Judicial Clerkship Handbook to advise and encourage Native American law students interested in judicial clerkships across all levels of courts, including tribal courts. 

PLSI Judicial Clerkship Committee:

  • Racheal White Hawk (’16), Chair
  • Christine Jordan, Member
  • Lydia Locklear, Member
  • Doreen McPaul (’01), Member
  • Rodina Cave Parnall (’01), Member
  • Alexander Mallory (’19), Member
  • Roshanna K. Toya, Member
  • Kateri Eisenberg

Who better to offer advice than those who have served in these positions? White Hawk, former Judicial Clerk, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and Arizona Supreme Court; Parnall, former Judicial Clerk, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit; Mallory, current Judicial Clerk, U.S. Immigration Court, Department of Justice Honors Program; and McPaul, former Judicial Clerk, Arizona Court of Appeals and former Staff Attorney, Navajo Nation Judicial Branch.

Q:  What is the importance of this project?

A: This Judicial Clerkship Handbook is a product of the Pre-Law Summer Institute (PLSI) Judicial Clerkship Committee, which consists of current and former Native American judicial clerks. The Handbook provides the unique perspective and advice of such judicial clerks about the sometimes mystifying judicial clerkship application process and is targeted toward Native American pre-law and law school students. Such students comprise an important audience because Native Americans are vastly underrepresented as not only judicial clerks but also as judges in America, and there has long been a connection between clerking in the judiciary and eventually becoming a judge.  It is, therefore, essential that Native Americans are able to obtain clerkships and thereby participate in the pipeline to the judiciary. Ultimately, the Handbook seeks to improve America’s judicial systems by ensuring the rich diversity of the American people is reflected in such systems, including the people indigenous to this land.  The Handbook also includes robust sections discussing tribal court clerkships, ensuring that students are made aware of such clerkships and funding opportunities as well as ensuring that tribal courts are included in the discussion about judicial systems in America. 

Q: What made you decide to create the handbook?

A: Each year, the PLSI Judicial Clerkship Committee selects several Native American students to attend the American Bar Association’s Judicial Clerkship Program, which connects students with judges and provides information to students about the clerkship experience and application process.  Such students must submit application materials to the Committee that are similar to what students would submit for a judicial clerkship application. We noticed that some students needed assistance with their application materials, so we decided to create this resource to assist those and other students in need of guidance. We also recognized that many judicial clerkship handbooks did not discuss tribal courts and did not include the unique perspective of Native American students or advice regarding how to discuss a student’s federal Indian law experience or valuable experiences that might be different from the typical judicial clerkship applicant. Each year, we will provide this Handbook to Native American pre-law students as a resource and to the National Native American Law Students Association.  We think it is important that Native American pre-law students in particular be made aware of judicial clerkships so they can better align their law school experience with becoming a judicial clerk if they wish to pursue such a path.

Q: What are you most anticipating moving forward with this project?

A: We hope Native American students will find the Handbook helpful in applying for judicial clerkships and that the number of Native Americans clerking and becoming judges will increase over time.  We also plan to continue improving the Handbook each year. As part of this Handbook, we are also starting a mentoring program in the fall of 2021 by connecting current and former Native American judicial clerks with Native American pre-law and law school students.  We hope this Handbook will help mentees prepare for, and mentors provide guidance about, the judicial clerkship application process.

________

Racheal White Hawk (’16)
Associate Attorney, Procopio, Cory, Hargreaves & Savitch, LLP
+
Rodina Cave Parnall (’01)
Director, Pre-Law Summer Institute, American Indian Law Center, Inc.

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Arizona Native Vote Changemakers

The Indian Legal Clinic student attorneys, ILP affiliates and volunteers worked on the Arizona Native Vote Election Protection Project (AZNVEP) for months to prepare for the general election on Nov. 3. The number of this year’s Election Protection volunteers made for a great success despite the circumstances! We had 100 volunteers, which is more than in past years, who assisted Native voters at over 60 polling locations in Arizona on Election Day through the Arizona Native Vote Election Protection Project. The ILC team included Native Vote Fellow Torey Dolan (’19) as lead, Brendan Clark (3L), Aspen Miller (3L), Dustin Rector (3L), MacArthur Stant (3L),and Blair Tarman (3L) under the supervision of Professor Patty Ferguson-Bohnee. Student attorneys provided virtual training sessions for volunteers, ran the hotline and interacted with voters on-site.

Through partnerships with the Inter Tribal Council of Arizona (ITCA), the Native American Bar Association of Arizona (NABA-AZ), the Arizona Election Protection Coalition and volunteers, Native Vote served as an important resource for hundreds of Native voters during the 2020 election. Over 250 Native American voters called the Native Vote Election Protection hotline for assistance on Election Day, and many voters called prior to the election to check voter registration and polling locations, and answered questions regarding general election information.  

With the extraordinary commitment from volunteers—ILP students, alumni, faculty, staff and friends—an Election Protection volunteer was on-site and available at the following locations: Navajo Nation, Hopi Tribe, Salt River Pima Maricopa Indian Community, Gila River Indian Community, Tohono O’odham Nation, White Mountain Apache, San Carlos Apache, Pascua Yaqui, Yavapai Apache, Yavapai Prescott, Quechan, Cocopah Indian Tribe, Colorado River Indian Tribes, Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation, and the Ak-Chin Indian Community. 

We thank our ASU community for the support, which released the ASU Now article on election day that highlighted the greater work of Native Vote as well as the innovative Polling Locator Tool created just this year with US Digital Response. Watch the video  to see how this tool was used by Native voters.

Two of our ILC students Miller and Stant who traveled to Hopi and Navajo Nation were highlighted in an Arizona Republic article

Ferguson-Bohnee was quoted in the Center for Public Integrity article and Arizona Republic articles here and here

On Nov. 11, Dolan was interviewed by Native America Calling to give a recap about Native Vote. She was also quoted in The State Press articles here and here

Find more coverage from Ferguson-Bohnee, Dolan and Brian Garcia (’20) in this VICE article, which included Arizona Native Vote assisting with extension hours to a polling site. 

We appreciate our partners and all who volunteered across Indian Country to ensure Arizona’s tribal communities and tribal members had access to the polls!