Come work with us!

The Indigenous Law & Policy Center at Michigan State University College of Law is hiring a Communications Coordinator. A description of the position is below, and the MSU HR link is here. The deadline for applying is May 3, 2022.

Communications Coordinator

Work type: Support Staff
Pay Grade: 10
Major Administrative Unit / College: Michigan State University College Of Law
Department: Juris Doctorate Programs 40001138
Sub Area: AP- Professionals
Salary: Salary Commensurate with Experience
Location: East Lansing
Categories: Administrative/Business/Professional, Administrative Professionals- AP, Full Time (90-100%), Union, Remote-Friendly

Position Summary

The College of Law Indigenous Law & Policy Center (ILPC) welcomes candidates who have a passion for working in indigenous rights advocacy; experience working with indigenous peoples and diverse groups of people; strong communication and organizational skills; and exhibit a high degree of professionalism and the ability to work in a self-directed environment or in a group setting.

The Indigenous Law & Policy Center Communications Coordinator supports the ILPC by assisting with developing website content, electronic newsletters, visual aids, social media posts, and other organizational communications aligned with the ILPC’s needs and strategic initiatives. The Communications Coordinator also maintains the ILPC office and assists ILPC faculty and staff in coordinating events, conferences, and student programming.

The ILPC welcomes candidates who (1) have a passion for working in indigenous rights advocacy; (2) have experience working with indigenous peoples and diverse groups of people; (3) have strong communication and organizational skills; and (4) exhibit a high degree of professionalism and the ability to work in both a self-directed environment and in a group setting.

The ILPC currently includes a Director, Associate Director, Clinic Director, and Legal Counselor. The Center works very closely together to recruit students; provide services to students, clinical clients, and tribal governments; provide teaching and learning opportunities related to Indigenous law; produce original research and scholarship on Indigenous law; and host events at the law school.

The Communications Coordinator reports to the Director and Associate Director of the ILPC and assists the ILPC team in providing administrative support. In collaboration with the College of Law Director of Events and the Director of Communications and Marketing, the Communications Coordinator:

• Assists the ILPC faculty and staff with planning and coordinating all ILPC events.
• Coordinates lunches, speaking events, and ILPC visits for students interested in Indian Law.
• Plans and organizes the annual ILPC conference.
• Manages marketing materials that amplify and strengthen ILPC presence at MSU, Michigan tribal communities, and within Indian country.
• Drafts ILPC correspondence and creates newsletters for the ILPC community, students, and alumni.
• Manages the ILPC social media accounts, including Turtle Talk.
• Attends Indian law events and conferences 1-4 times per year to promote the ILPC and its objectives; requires overnight travel.

Unit Specific Education/Experience/Skills

Knowledge equivalent to that which normally would be acquired by completing a four-year college degree program in Communications, Telecommunications, Journalism, Marketing, or Public Relations; up to six months of related and progressively more responsible or expansive work experience in internal communications; news, broadcasting, and print media, and/or marketing, advertising, and creative services; graphic design; word processing; desktop publishing; web design; presentation software; spreadsheet and/or database software; public presentation; or radio production; or an equivalent combination of education and experience.

Desired Qualifications

• Experience working with Native American and Indigenous communities.
• Excellent oral and written communication skills.
• Experience in event planning and logistics for on-campus events.
• Ability to work with a variety of individuals.
• Experience using WordPress and social media platforms.
• Ability to multitask.
• Experience using programs like InDesign and Photoshop.
• Experience in Communications, Development, Marketing, or related fields.
• Experience working in a university environment.

Equal Employment Opportunity Statement

All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, citizenship, age, disability or protected veteran status.

Together-we-will Statement

The university is requiring all MSU students, faculty and staff to be vaccinated against COVID-19 with limited exceptions. Learn more at:

Special Instructions

  • Cover Letter
  • Resume
  • Three Professional References

Work Hours


Remote Work Statement

MSU strives to provide a flexible work environment and this position has been designated as remote-friendly. Remote-friendly means some or all of the duties can be performed remotely as mutually agreed upon.

Bidding Eligibility ends on April 26, 2022 at 11:55 PM

Advertised: Apr 20, 2022 Eastern Daylight Time
Applications close: May 3, 2022 Eastern Daylight Time

Indian Law Issues in the News (10/25/2021)

Detroit News: First lady Jill Biden visits Saginaw Chippewa center to discuss youth mental health

Arizona Capitol Times: Ducey gives tribe $30M for water rights

NYTs: Can This Tribe of ‘Salmon People’ Pull Off One More Win?

WaPo (April article): Canada’s Supreme Court says some Native Americans who are not Canadian citizens can hunt in British Columbia

Grist: EPA finally has an action plan to improve water infrastructure and sanitation for US tribes

AP: Oklahoma court adds Quapaw Nation to those covered by McGirt ruling

Curbed: A Lenape Tribe Finally Wrests Its Sacred Site Back from Developers

AZ Central: Indigenous peoples seek greater voice and more influence at COP26 climate conference

NYTs: How Is ‘Dune’ So Prescient About Climate Change? Thank This Native American Tribe.

KTAR: Apaches ask appeals court to oppose transfer of Arizona land

The Hill: Human rights panel will hear case claiming US regulators violated Navajo tribe’s rights: report

Tulsa World: Tulsa, Owasso join state in seeking to overturn McGirt ruling

Great Lakes Now: Enbridge temporarily stops Michigan pipeline due to protests

NYTs: Film Club: ‘A Conversation With Native Americans on Race’

Salt Lake Tribune: Survivors see a link between Indigenous boarding schools’ harsh discipline and later domestic violence

Keloland: South Dakota ACLU says Dept. of Education may have violated federal and constitutional law by removing elements of Native American culture and history from draft of state social studies standards

Michigan Tribes in the News (10/20/21)

Toward Freedom: Photo Essay: Indigenous Struggle Against Enbridge Lines 3 and 5

UP Matters: Providing “Hope Not Handcuffs” at the Bay Mills Police Department

UP Matters: Bay Mills President Whitney Gravelle shares the impact of intergenerational trauma on addiction

UP Matters: Preventing addiction using a cultural approach in Native communities

Peninsula Press: Indigenous groups demand shut down of Michigan pipeline

Deadline Detroit: Reporting On Indian Boarding School Is Painfully Personal For Michigan Journalist

MLive: Dozens of Michigan schools still use Native American slurs, imagery

Indian Law Issues in the News (10/20/21)

Native News Online: Washington Tribe Waits to Resume Whaling

Tribal Business News: Puyallup Tribe inks deal with Amazon for massive sorting center on tribal land

Tampa Bay Times: Florida officials and Tribe win Round 1 in legal fight over sports betting

Times Standard: Humboldt County supes OK deal between Child Welfare Services, Hoopa Valley Tribe

The Spokesman-Review: Homesteading family’s lasting legacy realized in agreement to return nearly 10,000 acres of habitat to Colville Tribes in conservation deal

NYTs: In Minneapolis, a Thriving Center for Indigenous Art: The eight-block American Indian Cultural Corridor celebrates Native American art and commerce.

Williston Herald: MHA Nation family’s oil spill suit dismissed after discovery sanctions limited damages to $1

Indian Law Issues in the News (10/19/2021)

Lansing State Journal: Anishinaabemowin class aims to save Michigan’s first language

NPR: The National Park Service could soon have its first Native American director

Charles F. Sams III

HCN: How tribal leaders want Chuck Sams to lead the Park Service: The Umatilla leader would be the first Native person in charge of the agency, which has a thorny history with tribes

WaPo: The nomination of Chuck Sams to lead the Park Service is already changing history US Supreme Court to Hear Texas Tribal Gaming Case, Could Impact Claims in Rhode Island, Maine, Massachusetts

Times Higher Education: US universities ponder massive debt to Native Americans: In year since land-grant institutions learned they were funded by theft, serious conversations have barely begun

SCOTUSblog: Court adds two cases on Native American law and issues two opinions granting police officers qualified immunity

KLCC: Ancient Native American forest practices demonstrated in burn near Eugene

Green Entrepreneur: Native Americans Jump Way Ahead in Selling Legal Cannabis

Indian Law Issues in the News (10/18/2021)

US Customs and Border Patrol: Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation to Issue Enhanced Tribal Card Through Agreement with CBP

PBS News Hour (8 min. video): Why Native Americans are buying back land that was stolen from them (Part 1 of 2)

PBS News Hour (7:22 min. video): Native American tribe land buybacks start a commercial approach to social justice (Part 2 of 2)

Time: The Fight to Save the Salmon

Grist: North Carolina tribes fear pipeline will damage waterways, burial grounds

E&E News: EPA unveils plan to address tribal water woes

Time: MIT Reckons with Early Leader’s Role in Forced Removal of Native American Tribes

Traverse City Record Eagle: Journalist unearths family history while reporting on boarding school trauma, family, cultural destrution

Christian Science Monitor: Untaming a river: The stakes behind America’s largest dam removal

MLive: Dozens of Michigan schools still use Native American slurs, imagery

Daily Beast: Native American Group Calls on Fox News to Fire Hosts Over ‘Racist’ Comments

NBC: NO MORE STOLEN SISTERS: Behind the history, colonization, and American epidemic of missing indigenous women

WaPo: Beyond blunt truths about Columbus Day, Biden presses for real progress for Indigenous people

WILX: Michigan AG Dana Nessel joins bipartisan coalition in defense of Indian Child Welfare Act protections

Cherokee Nation Delegate to Congress Kim Teehee’s Tribute to Former U.S. Rep. Dale Kildee

Kim Teehee wrote a heartfelt tribute to Dale Kildee and agreed to allow us to post it here:

I knew the day would come but still I wasn’t prepared to hear that Dale Kildee had passed away. He passed on October 13th, which is also my birthday. My mind is flooded with precious memories. I worked for Dale for 11 ½ years as the first senior advisor to the bipartisan Congressional Native American Caucus. Dale founded the Caucus after anti-Indian measures started passing the House only to be stopped in the Senate. He knew a bipartisan Caucus was necessary to educate Members about Indian country issues. What began as a Caucus of 15 members had grown to over 100 members. My job was to work across partisan divides with House leaders, Caucus members, Committees, and with tribal leaders. As Co-chair of the Caucus, Dale successfully advanced legislation on myriad topics from education, health care, transportation, appropriations to housing. Under his leadership, the Caucus had a 100% success rate that included defeating every anti-Indian proposal. He also enjoyed giving speeches to tribal organizations where he became famous for pulling out his pocket U.S. Constitution and reminding the audience that tribes are sovereign and that sovereignty must be protected. He was a great defender of tribal sovereignty.

Dale had no tribes in his congressional district and people would often ask why he cared so much about the Indians. His commitment began when as a kid his Dad took him to the land in Michigan where a tribe’s village once stood but was burned to ashes when the people refused to leave. He never forgot that story or the other injustices that Native people endured. He had a passion for education too having served as a Latin teacher. When he served in the Michigan state legislature he led the way for the passage of the Michigan Indian Tuition Waiver Act, which waived the college tuition of any Michigan Indian who attended a public college. He took his passion for Indians and education to Congress where in the Education and Labor Committee he began slipping “Indian tribes” in every education bill that listed “states” to ensure tribes were expressly included. He also had a special affinity for the Michigan tribes and a deep appreciation of their unique histories. I also enjoyed working with these tribes.

Dale was a devout Catholic and loved his work family as if we were his real family. I am eternally grateful for his unconditional support. When I was tapped for a White House appointment in the Obama Administration, he galvanized congressional support and helped secure my historic position. He was a gentle soul with a warrior’s spirit. He believed in civil discourse. He despised unkindness.

Dale lived a blessed life. He did not fear the inevitable of life. He was comforting to me that way. I last saw Dale two years ago at lunch for his 90th birthday just before the pandemic hit. Something in me knew that would be my last time with him. As we said goodbye, he hugged me and kissed my cheek telling me that he loved me. I love you too, Dale. Rest In Peace.

SCOTUS Grants Cert in Denezpi v. United States

Cert Petition of Merle Denezpi

Question Presented:

Is the Court of Indian Offenses of Ute Mountain Ute Agency a federal agency such that Merle Denezpi’s conviction in that court barred his subsequent prosecution in a United States District Court for a crime arising out of the same incident?

United States’ Brief in Opposition

United States v Denezpi Tenth Circuit Opinion