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(Many Paths)
An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America
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Obama Nominates Cherokee To Ambassador-Rank Post
by Cherokee Phoenix staff
WASHINGTON, DC – President Barack Obama has nominated Cherokee Nation citizen Keith Harper of Washington, D.C., to an ambassador-rank post within the United Nations.

On June 10, Obama announced Harper as his pick for U.S. representative to the United Nations Human Rights Council. If confirmed by the Senate, Harper would be the first Native American in an ambassador post.

The United Nations Human Rights Council addresses human rights issues around the world. Prior U.S. representatives have included former first last Eleanor Roosevelt and vice-presidential candidate Geraldine Ferraro.

Harper is most well known for working on the Cobell trust fund lawsuit since its inception in 1996. He began his career with the Native American Rights Fund and joined the Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton firm in Washington before a settlement was announced in December 2009.

Harper attended the New York University School of Law and the University of California at Berkley.

He focuses his practice on litigation and Native American affairs. Throughout his career, Harper has represented tribes and individual Indians. He served as a principal advisor and chair of the Native American Domestic Policy Committee for the Obama campaign and then as a member of the Obama-Biden Presidential Transition Team in the Energy and Environment Cluster.

He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Rockefeller Foundation NGL Fellowship, Skadden Fellowship, the University of Arizona Indigenous Peoples Law Program Senior Fellowship, the American Bar Association Business Law Division Ambassadorship, the Fowler Fellowship for Public Policy, the Root-Tilden-Snow Scholarship and the Center for International Studies Fellowship.

In 2001, he was selected as a Leadership Conference on Civil Rights delegate to the World Conference Against Racism in Durban, South Africa.

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