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Four Native lawyers in top posts for Wash. bar

Four Native American lawyers are in top positions at the Washington State Bar Association.

Fawn R. Sharp is serving as governor-at-large, Gabriel Galanda is chair of the bar's Indian law section, Professor Robert Anderson is the chair-elect of the section and Leona Colgrove serves as -chair of the bar's diversity committee.

"As bar leaders, we provide our people with a voice on legal issues and decisions that affect the very essence of life in Indian Country," said Mr. Galanda, who also serves as president of the Northwest Indian Bar Association. "I believe it is that voice that has begun to attract so many Indian people to the legal profession in Washington state and beyond."

Sharp is a member of the Quinault Nation of Washington and serves as the tribe's lead counsel. She is founding member and former vice-president of the National Intertribal Tax Alliance. Last year, she completed advanced studies at Oxford University, where she earned a Certificate in International Human Rights Law with an emphasis on Indigenous Peoples.

Galanda, a member of the Round Valley Indian Confederation of California, has been pushing to increase the number of Indian lawyers. As president of NIBA, membership has tripled in the organization. He is a descendant of the Nomlaki and Concow tribes.

Anderson, a member of the Chippewa Tribe, is an assistant professor at the University of Washington School of Law, where he teaches Indian law, property law, and public land law. He also serves at the director of the law school's Native American Law Center. He was a former Native American Rights Fund (NARF) staff attorney who helped open NARF's office in Alaska and he served as assistant solicitor for Indian affairs at the Department of Interior during the Clinton administration. He was later named a counselor to former Interior secretary Bruce Babbitt, where he handled Indian law, water rights, public land issues and Endangered Species Act matters.

Colegrove, a member of the Quinault Nation, is an in-house attorney for her tribe. She advises the tribal business committee on legal issues and provides some legal aide to tribal members on in civil matters, including dissolutions, child support, and probate matters.

Relevant Links:
Washington State Bar Association -
Northwest Indian Bar Association -

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