Annual White House Tribal Nations Conference opens in DC

Update #4: Audio from the afternoon session with President Barack Obama and Native youth is available on the Indianz.Com SoundCloud.

Update #3: Additional tracks from the afternoon session are being added to the audio from the White House Tribal Nations Conference on the Indianz.Com SoundCloud.

Update #2: Audio from the morning session is available on the Indianz.Com SoundCloud.

Update: The "Cabinet Town Halls" portion of the White House Tribal Nations Conference has begun. These sessions are not being webcast. The webcast will resume for the afternoon at 1pm Eastern


White House Webcast: 2015 Tribal Nations Conference

Interior Secretary Sally Jewell speaks with Native youth on November 4, 2015. The youth are attending the White House Tribal Nations Conference in Washington, D.C. Photo by Center for Native American Youth / Twitter

Hundreds of tribal leaders, along with Native youth, are in Washington, D.C., today for the seventh White House Tribal Nations Conference.

This year's event is being held at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center, near the White House. It opens at 8:30am Eastern and will feature a handful of Cabinet officials during the morning session.

President Barack Obama is slated to appear later in the afternoon at around 4:15pm. In addition to addressing tribal leaders, he will speak with Native youth who have been selected to participate in the conference. Questions are being solicited on Twitter via #GenIAsksObama.

“There are over 2.1 million Native American youth in the United States and we are crucial to the future of Indian Country," said Rory Taylor, a young member of the Pawnee Nation who is taking part in today's conference. "It’s important for both the administration and tribal leaders hear our voices on the issues we care about, and I’m very excited for this opportunity to grow as a leader.”

The conference is being webcast by the White House. The agenda, subject to changes, follows:
8:30am - Morning plenary
Valerie Jarrett, Senior Advisor to President Obama, White House
Secretary Sally Jewell, Department of the Interior
Chairman Aaron Payment, Sault Ste. Marie Tribe
Rory Taylor, Pawnee Nation of Oklahoma Deputy Secretary Heather Higginbottom, Department of State

9:45am - Cabinet Town Halls (Update: No webcast)
Secretary Sally Jewell, Department of the Interior
Secretary Julian Castro, Department of Housing and Urban Development
Secretary Tom Vilsack, Department of Agriculture
Secretary Sylvia Burwell, Department of Health and Human Services (Note: Secretary Burwell will not be able to attend due to a conflicting engagement)

11am - Breakout Sessions (closed to press - no webcast)

1pm - Closing Session
First Arm Chair Session
Secretary Sally Jewell, Department of the Interior
Deputy Attorney General Sally Quillian Yates, Department of Justice
Deputy Secretary John King, Department of Education
Director Cecilia Munoz, White House Domestic Policy Council

Second Arm Chair Session
Acting Director Beth Cobert, Office of Personnel Management
Administrator Maria Contreras-Sweet, Small Business Administration
Deputy Secretary Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall, Department of Energy
Secretary Thomas Perez, Department of Labor

Third Arm Chair Session
Director Dr. John Holdren, Office of Science and Technology Policy
Director Christy Goldfuss, Council on Environmental Quality
Deputy Secretary Michael Connor, Department of the Interior

4:15pm - President Barack Obama

Related Stories:
Fact Sheet: White House Tribal Nations Conference in 2015 (11/5)
President Obama welcomes Karen Diver as Native advisor (11/5)
Obama to speak with Native youth at Tribal Nations Conference (11/2)
Obama issues proclamation for Native American Heritage Month (10/30)
Vice President Biden reflects on triumphs of key Indian policies (10/28)
White House Tribal Nations Conference on November 5 in D.C. (10/20)

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