We’re still basking in the amazing energy from #NAFOAFall23! Many thanks to Matt Orley of Big Paper Strategy for capturing the magic of the conference. What was your favorite session? Photo courtesy NAFOA
5 Things You Need to Know this Week
We’re already looking forward to the next conference. Be sure to save the date!
Monday, October 16, 2023
1. NAFOA NEWS:
NAFOA INITIATES SEARCH FOR NEW EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR TO LEAD TRIBAL ECONOMIC ADVANCEMENT
NAFOA, founded as the Native American Finance Officer’s Association, is initiating its search for a permanent executive director. This leadership position will be pivotal in advancing NAFOA’s mission of strengthening tribal finance and growing tribal economies.
Since May this year, former Yurok Tribe Chair Susan Masten has served as the organization’s Interim Director. Her years of leadership experience and working knowledge of Indian Country have been a valuable asset during this period of transition within the organization.
The incoming Executive Director will lead NAFOA’s initiatives, working collaboratively with tribal leadership, financial professionals, and federal partners to meet the challenges of economic growth and change in Indian Country. They will serve as chief executive officer of the organization, and will be responsible for overseeing the administration, programs, and strategic plan of NAFOA
2. MUST READ:
NATIVE AMERICAN TRIBES HAVE VAST ENERGY RESOURCES, BUT FACE BARRIERS DEVELOPING THEM
While Indigenous nations across the United States have vast energy resources, it can be hard for them to develop that potential.
Tribal representatives spoke to the Natural Resources Subcommittee on Indian and Insular Affairs on Thursday about the challenges they face in developing energy resources.
Sub-committee chairwoman U.S. Rep. Harriet Hageman, R-Wyoming, said 30 percent of coal reserves west of the Mississippi River are on tribal lands.
“These untapped resources can be a key revenue source for tribes, particularly in rural areas, and can increase the United States’ supply of energy,” she said.
While several tribes have sought to develop their energy resources, Hageman said development of energy projects on tribal lands requires “jumping through more hoops, more bureaucracy, and involves more agencies than on any other type of lands. We need to change that.”
This is an area where Hageman and U.S. Rep. Teresa Leger Fernández, D-New Mexico, expressed a common sentiment.
“The federal government has a trust responsibility to promote tribal self-government and sovereignty of American Indians and Alaskan Native, including their ability to develop their economy and their natural resources,” Leger Fernández said.
While Hageman focused on fossil fuels in her remarks, Leger Fernández spoke about renewable resources such as solar and geothermal.
“Tribes want and need to be in control of their projects,” she said.
Source: NM Political Report
3. IN THE NAFOA NAVIGATOR:
GRANTMAKING TO SUPPORT A MORE EQUITABLE AND PROSPEROUS FUTURE FOR NATIVE AMERICANS
By Tim Rios, Rural Strategy Leader, Philanthropy & Community Impact, Wells Fargo
When you look at a map outlining reservation lands, you will notice the physical boundaries to which the once strong Tribal nations are now confined. It is a visual reminder of years of systemic barriers that have left underdeveloped, underbanked, and underserved Tribal economies.
In recent years, Wells Fargo has committed more than $70 million to address the barriers affecting economic prosperity in Indian Country. First, in 2017 with an initial $50 million commitment over five years and again in 2023 through a new initiative called
“Invest Native” with an additional $20 million commitment. In 2017, Wells Fargo’s $50 million commitment addressed the unique social, economic, and environmental needs in Native communities. The company fulfilled this financial promise in 2022, working with Native-serving organizations in 38 states to strengthen housing, small business, financial health, education and more in Native communities.
Funding from the $50 million helped entities like Native Community Capital support small business borrowers as they navigated the COVID economy; And Lakota Funds with additional capital to help a young Lakota man with his business to create five new jobs and provide a quality product and service in the Pine Ridge reservation and surrounding communities.
Continue Reading on pg. 108-109
4. PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT:
NATIVE FORWARD CPA EXAMINATION FUNDING 2023-2024
Deadline: March 1, 2024
Native Forward Scholars Fund, in partnership with the Johnson Scholarship Foundation, provides financial assistance to American Indians and Alaska Natives to assist with the costs associated with taking the CPA examination sections. Students and professionals seeking CPA licensure are encouraged to apply.
Eligible applicants may receive assistance no more than one time for each section of the CPA examination, and recipients will only be awarded for one section of the exam at a time. Native Forward will provide assistance for application fees, registration fees, and exam fees. This award covers fees incurred to register for the exam and other exam-related expenses. Costs of preparatory courses may be considered depending on funding availability.
To be considered for CPA Examination funding the applicant must meet the following requirements:
- Be a member of a federally recognized Tribe.
- Meet all CPA examination requirements.
- Submit test results for each funded section to Native Forward as soon as the results are received.
- Exam assistance is limited to no more than one time for each section.
Source: Native Forward Scholars Fund
MORONGO CASINO RESORT & SPA IS SEEKING CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER
The Chief Financial Officer is responsible for the analysis, planning, implementation, and management of all financial activities of Morongo Casino Resort and Spa including financial reporting, strategy, forecasting, cost analysis, budgeting and strategic planning.
Establishes accounting policies, procedures, controls and reporting systems in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles. Responsible for the overall integrity and accuracy of the accounting system. Ensures that all financial accounting systems are accurate, efficient and in accordance with professional accounting practices. Ensures casino’s compliance with provisions of the State Compact, IGRA, NIGC, Tribal Ordinances, Gaming Agency regulations, cash transaction reporting, and IRS withholding & reporting requirements.
Learn More & Apply at nafoa.org/jobs