Last month at the National Congress of American Indians 71st Annual Convention, Midwest regional caucus members elected Pokagon Tribal Council member at large Roger Rader to be alternate vice president on the organization’s Executive Committee.
In this role, Rader will work closely with Aaron Payment, Midwest area vice president and chair of the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe, to speak on behalf of the Midwest tribes on national issues involving Indian Country. He’ll play a big part in NCAI general sessions and breakout sessions during NCAI events.
“I think it’s important to have Pokagon representation in the Midwest region,” said Rader. “Former Pokagon Chairman Matt Wesaw served as the Midwest VP, and it’s good to have a Pokagon sitting at the big table. And it’s good to have two Michigan tribes representing the Midwest.”
The Midwest region includes sovereign tribes located in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, Michigan and Indiana. Rader expects to collaborate with other executive Committee members on monthly conference calls, like the one he participated in last week.
“We discussed the impact of the national elections, and began planning for the Tribal Nations Conference and the next mid-year conference in St. Paul, Minnesota in June.
“I’m excited to be part of the planning process and involve Pokagons more in the session,” he said. “Since the conference will be held in Minnesota, we’ll highlight the culture of the Midwest tribes.”