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Indian Law Program

Visiting Indian Law Professor Frank Pommersheim

August 27, 2015

  • Frank Pommersheim

Lewis & Clark Law School is pleased to announce that it will host renowned Indian law author and professor, Frank Pommersheim, as the second Walter R. Echo-Hawk Distinguished Visiting Professor in the spring of 2016.

Pommersheim teaches at the University of South Dakota School of Law, where his specialty is Indian law. He studied at Colgate, Columbia, and Harvard Universities. He joined the staff at the University of South Dakota in 1984, and at the time had been living and working on the Rosebud Sioux Reservation for 10 years. He writes extensively on Indian law, and serves on a number of tribal appellate courts throughout Indian country.

Some of his writings include Braid of Feathers: American Indian Law and Contemporary Tribal Life (1995) and Broken Landscape: Indians, Indian Tribes and the Constitution (2012). He has received the University of South Dakota Belbas-Larson Award for Excellence in Teaching, the South Dakota Peace and Justice Center Reconciliation Award, and the John Wesley Jackson Award as the Outstanding Professor of Law.

While serving as the second annual Walter R. Echo-Hawk Distinguished Visiting Professor at Lewis & Clark Law School, he will teach two classes on campus. His class about federal Indian law will include the federal-tribal relationship; tribal sovereignty and self-government; state authority in Indian country; Indian religion and culture, concepts of property in Indian law; and hunting, fishing, and water rights. Pommersheim’s tribal courts seminar will study and analyze various tribal court decisions dealing with important and diverse issues of tribal law such as tribal constitutions, tribal membership, tribal elections, civil rights, criminal law, family law, property law, contracts and torts.

Pommersheim’s visit is possible because of generous support of local tribes, including a gift from the Snoqualmie Tribe.