Nevember 02, 2009 –
MAYETTA: Steve Ortiz, Tribal Chairman, is in Washington, D.C. this week attending several meetings with other Tribal Leaders and the Obama Administration. On Thursday he will get the opportunity to interact with President Obama directly at a Tribal Nations Conference that will be held at the White House.
Chairman Ortiz’s week kicks off tomorrow where he will be among many of the tribal representatives from all corners of Indian Country that will join other international dignitaries, members of Congress, Administration officials and tribal supporters to officially open the National Congress of American Indian (NCAI) Embassy of Tribal Nations inWashington, D.C. Later in the day, he and other Tribal Leaders are planning to meet with Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius in a roundtable discussion.
On Wednesday, Chairman Ortiz is scheduled to attend a Tribal Leader session with Hilda Solis, U.S. Department of Labor Secretary and later in the evening he will attend a reception at theNational Museum of the American Indian.
On Thursday, he plans to be present when President Obama hosts the White House Tribal Nations Conference that will provide leaders from the 564 federally recognized tribes the opportunity to interact directly with the President and representatives from his Administration. The day-long activities includes the President who will deliver opening and closing remarks and also participate in an interactive discussion with Tribal Leaders. Other interactive discussions in the areas of economic development and natural resources; public safety and housing; and education, health and labor will be led by representatives from the Administration. Officials expected to be there include Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, Commerce Secretary Gary Locke, Labor Secretary Hilda Solis, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, Energy Secretary Steven Chu, Education Secretary Arne Duncan, EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson, Deputy Attorney General David Ogden, HUD Deputy Secretary Ronald Sims, DHS Deputy Secretary Jane Lute, Associate Attorney General Tom Perrelli, and Indian Health Service Director Dr. Yvette Robideaux.
The White House Tribal Nations Conference will also be streamed live atwww.whitehouse.gov/live. Please check back on the day of the event for the final schedule.
In related news, the White House announced last Friday that President Obama has declared the month of November as National Native American Heritage Month through a proclamation. In it, Obama states that November 27 should be commemorated as Native American Heritage Day and that all Americans should celebrate with appropriate programs and activities and throughout the month of November in honor of Native Americans.