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Here’s this week’s rundown of new funding opportunities, people on the move, events, jobs and federal contracting awards.   


NOFO: The Department of Transportation (DOT) posted a notice-of-funding-opportunity on Feb. 20 for federally recognized tribes and tribal organizations to participate in the Hazardous Materials Emergency Preparedness (HMEP) grant program. The grant initiative aims to enhance HAZMAT planning and training activities, ensuring the safe transport of hazardous materials within tribal territories. The DOT has allocated $1 million for the FY 2024 HMEP Planning and Training Grant for Tribes. The agency intends to make 15 grant awards ranging from $50,000 to $250,000, as outlined in a summary available on the Grants.gov website.

NOFO: The Department of Agriculture Forest Service announced Feb. 14 that it will distribute $20 million in grant funding to help tribes access private markets for forest resilience and climate mitigation that have emerged in the wake of climate change. Federally recognized tribes, Alaska Native Corporations, and Alaska Native villages will be eligible for the resultant competitive grant program. Proposal submissions for the grant opportunity are now open through grants.gov, and will be accepted through Aug. 21, 2024. 

NOFO: The DOT’s Federal Transit Administration announced the opportunity to apply for approximately $1.1 billion in competitive grants under the fiscal year 2024 Low or No Emission Grant Program and approximately $390 million in competitive grants under the fiscal 2024 Grants for Buses and Bus Facilities Program. This funding opportunity also introduces streamlined application requirements for tribes requesting less than $1 million, making it easier for tribes with relatively small requests to apply for Federal funds to purchase or lease buses and construct bus facilities, according to the FTA’s website. Proposals must be submitted electronically by 11:59 p.m. (ET) on April 25, 2024.


The White House said Friday that the National Center’s CEO Chris James has been tapped to serve on a trade advisory committee. President Biden intends to appoint James and eight other executives to the Advisory Committee for Trade Policy and Negotiations. 

E. Sequoyah Simermeyer, who led the National Indian Gaming Commission through the pandemic era, resigned effective Saturday, Feb. 24, after nearly five years at the helm of the organization. The National Indian Gaming Commission, which announced the transition on Feb. 20, oversees implementation and enforcement of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act, which in turn governs a tribal gaming industry that crested $40 billion in 2023, according to NIGC statistics. More here

Seattle University School of Law said it selected Professor Nazune Menka to become the next faculty director of the Center for Indian Law & Policy (CILP) beginning July 1. Menka, who will also serve as a tenure-track assistant professor of law, is Seattle U Law’s first Alaska Native faculty member. She joins Seattle University from University of California, Berkeley School of Law, where she was the inaugural director of the Center for Indigenous Law & Justice. Born and raised in Anchorage and the village of Chistochina, Alaska, Menka is Koyukon Athabaskan (from Central Alaska) and Lumbee (from Southeastern North Carolina)

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Fern Orie has been named interim CEO of the Wisconsin Indigenous Economic Development Corporation (WIEDC), a non profit coalition of four Native Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs). Orie is the founder of the Matriarch Group and worked previously at Oweesta Corporation. She is founder and former CEO of Wisconsin Native Loan Fund, and a founder of WIEDC.  


CFOThe Wisconsin Native Loan Fund is seeking a chief financial officer to handle the organization’s financial planning and risk management. The position is listed as remote/hybrid. Application period closes on March 15, 2024. 

Loan Officer - Nimiipuu Community Development Fund (NCDF), a nonprofit Native CDFI, is looking for a loan officer with responsibility for underwriting, originating, closing, and monitoring its portfolio of loans. NCDF serves the tribal citizens of the Nez Perce Reservation and community members in areas of Idaho, Oregon, and Washington. 

Dates: Feb. 26-29
Location: Online (registration required) 

The Department of the Interior is hosting a series of tribal listening sessions regarding a planned update to its Climate Adaptation Plan. In a Dear Tribal Leader letter, the DOI shared that the updated plan — renamed to “Climate Adaptation Plan” (CAP) — is expected to evaluate exposure to climate hazards and drivers of change across the full suite of DOI buildings and employees, and to the lands, waters, and cultural and natural resources it is responsible for stewarding. The CAP will also outline actions to address the threats these exposures present—through investments and changes to policy, budgeting, grant funding, and training.

Date:  Feb. 29, 2024
Location:  Online Webinar

Join the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) Foundation leadership for a discussion on the newly launched philanthropic arm of NCAI and its ambitious plans to support Tribal Nations in a transformative journey toward shared prosperity and resilience. On the heels of NCAI’s 2024 State of Indian Nations address in Washington D.C., featured guest NCAI President Mark Macarro (Pechanga Band of Indians) will unveil details on the Foundation’s core pillars aimed at upholding tribal sovereignty, empowering leadership, cultivating youth voices, and fortifying Tribal Nations. Register here

Dates: Feb. 29, 2024 
Location: Ho-Chunk Casino, Baraboo, Wisconsin

The Indigenous Cannabis Industry Association’s summit brings together cannabis advocates, tribal nations, entrepreneurs, and policy experts. Attendees can expect sessions on the effects of new federal laws and Wisconsin's proposed medicinal cannabis bill, as well as discussions on tribal nation growth, fundraising, and industry opportunities in hemp and cannabis.

Dates: Feb. 28-29
Location: Pechanga Resort Casino

Every two years, the Department of Energy’s Office of Indian Energy along with other DOE offices convenes Tribal Leaders and energy stakeholders to exchange ideas promoting energy infrastructure development for Tribes and Tribal communities. Tribal Leaders and their subject matter experts—together with the DOE, the administration, federal agency partners, state governments, private industry, utilities, and academia—attend to build networks, exchange ideas, explore cross-cutting and cost-effective solutions to national energy interests, and support Tribal sovereignty. Registration info is here

Date: March 7, 2024
Location: Virtual

Fourth annual cybersecurity summit presented by TribalHub. Learn about the critical role and responsibilities of tribal executives, tribal regulators and tribal technology resources in protecting and preparing your tribe or tribal enterprise. Build and gain insight into the necessary and critical investments required for cybersecurity. Learn about what costly information security mistakes to avoid in order to minimize the risk of your tribe or enterprise being a victim or target. Registration here


Here are some notable news items and federal contract awards won by tribal entities from last week.

WBK Engineering, a company under the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi’s non-gaming investment group Mno-Bmadsen enterprise Bodwé Professional Services, has received a Disadvantaged Business Enterprise certification in Michigan. The certification comes six months after a similar qualification in Illinois. DBE certifications, issued under the US Department of Transportation, open up new avenues for businesses seeking state and federal contracts. 

Fortis Native Group, LLC was awarded an $8.2 million contract on Feb. 20 by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to provide preventative and corrective facility maintenance services for United States Army Reserve facilities in the Salt Lake City region. The Salt Lake City region includes portions of two states (Colorado and Utah). The contract will be awarded as a Stand-Alone firm-fixed-price contract in fiscal year 2024 with a one-year base period and four, one-year option periods. Fortis Native Group is owned by the Poarch Band of Creek Indians through its ECKE holding company.  

Chenega Exp Federal JV, LLC was given an award on Feb. 23 for a $6.2 million contract to provide engineering services to the U.S. Air Force Air Combat Command. Chenega Exp Federal JV is a Joint Venture between Articus Solutions, LLC, a certified 8(a) Small Disadvantaged Business and wholly owned subsidiary of Chenega Corporation, and exp Federal Inc., an A/E firm with a 50-year history and the support of 3,000 professionals in over 100 offices worldwide.

Yulista Integrated Solutions, LLC was awarded a contract adjustment on Feb. 20 by the Defense Logistics Agency of the Department of Defense (DoD). The $8.2 million (total) contract reflects an increase of $4.6 million from the original contract order. Yulista is owned by Calista Corporation, an Alaska Native Corporation.  

ASRC Federal Data Solutions, LLC was awarded a $1.5 million contract on Feb. 1 by the Air Force Test Center. ASRC Federal Data Solutions is owned by the Arctic Slope Regional Corporation, an Alaska Native Corporation. 

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