IPLP Speaker Series

Each semester the Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy (IPLP) Program hosts leading indigenous rights scholars and legal advocates as part of IPLP’s Distinguished Speaker Series.

All IPLP speaker series events are free and open to the public. If you would like to attend, please RSVP to law-iplp@email.arizona.edu.

Spring 2019 Speaker Series

Reviving Tribal Kinship

Thursday, January 17, 12–1:15 p.m.
James E. Rogers College of Law, Room 156

IPLP alumnus Gabe Galanda (’00) will discuss how at least 80 tribes have devolved from traditional kinship systems to disenrollment, blood quantum and other non-indigenous practices. Gabe will call for a kinship revival in Indian Country. He, along with his colleagues at Galanda Broadman, PLLC, have defended hundreds of tribal citizens from disenrollment, including the Nooksack 306 who have been fighting their disenrollment since 2012.


Keepseagle v. Vilsack: The settlement and establishment of the Native American Agriculture Fund

Monday, April 1, 12:00–1:30 p.m.
Rountree Hall, Room 204
1145 N. Mountain Avenue, Tucson, AZ 85721

Join the Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy (IPLP) Program and University of Arizona American Indian Studies for a lecture by Dr. Joe Hiller.

The long-running class-action lawsuit over discrimination by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) against American Indian ranchers and farmers was recently settled. It resulted in programmatic reform at USDA, along with cash settlement and loan forgiveness for successful claimants. The settlement also established the Native American Agriculture Fund (NAAF). The Fund is tasked by the Settlement to support and develop American Indian agriculture by providing for: business assistance, agricultural education, technical support and advocacy services. NAAF is the largest philanthropic organization in the US solely dedicated to serving the American Indian agriculture community.


Exploring Rights and Responsibilities

Monday, April 8, 12:00–1:30 p.m.
James E. Rogers College of Law, Room 156
1201 E Speedway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85721

Join the Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy (IPLP) Program to meet, learn from, and network with some of IPLP’s most distinguished and professionally accomplished alumni.

Every right that we hold is tied to a set of corresponding responsibilities. In order to maintain the rights that we claim for ourselves, we must establish a foundation for those rights to stand on. We do this by taking responsibility for ensuring the rights of all living beings. IPLP graduate Sherri Mitchell (JD, ’11), will explore how we anchor our rights to a foundation of moral, cultural, and environmental responsibilities.

Fall 2018 Speaker Series

Tribal Justice Capacity Building: the Intersection of Public Health, Public Safety, and Child Welfare

Wednesday September 5, 2018, 12-1:30 PM
James E. Rogers College of Law, Room 156

Alfred Urbina, Assistant Attorney General of the Tohono O’odham Nation, will lead a discussion on the intersections between the criminal justice system, child welfare system, and public health in tribal communities. Mr. Urbina is a graduate of Arizona Law's Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy (IPLP) program, an enrolled member of the Pascua Yaqui Tribe, and a veteran of the U.S. Army.


Being an Advocate in the Arizona State Legislature

Monday October 1, 2018, 12-1:30 PM
James E. Rogers College of Law, Room 160

IPLP LLM graduate Wenona Benally is an Arizona State Representative for Legislative District 7. Representative Benally will be joined by Rep. Eric Descheenie, D-Chinle (District 7), for a discussion on their experiences serving in the Arizona State Legislature, updates about important policy initiatives in the state, and Benally’s path to becoming a legal advocate for indigenous peoples and a state representative. Wenona graduated from IPLP with a Master of Laws (LLM) Degree in Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy.


Asserting Sovereignty: Nation Building at the Navajo Nation

Monday October 22, 2018, 12-1:30 PM
James E. Rogers College of Law, Room 156

Ethel Branch, Attorney General of the Navajo Nation Department of Justice, Office of the Attorney General, will lead a discussion on the Native Nation building efforts of the Navajo Nation, as well as some of the challenges of asserting your sovereignty as a tribe.


Rivers as Legal Persons: Indigenous Responsibility and Western Rights Frameworks

Thursday, October 25, 12–1:15 p.m.
Rountree Hall, Room 204 

Catherine Iorns Magallanes is a Reader in the School of Law at Victoria University of Wellington, Aotearoa New Zealand, on environmental law, indigenous rights, and statutory interpretation. Professor Iorns will discuss four recent examples and how they implement different frameworks, from indigenous conceptions of responsibility for nature, to rights-based approaches, and even a hybrid of three approaches. She suggests that rights–including rights for nature–are useful tools, but also that tools which impose or implement collective responsibility may be even more useful.