du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Chairwoman Karen Diver
introduces President Obama on Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2013, at
the White House Tribal Nations Conference. (photo courtesy
Karen Diver, Chairwoman of the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior
Chippewa in Minnesota, has just announced that she is stepping down
from her long time position as tribal chairwoman and has accepted
an appointment to serve at the White House as special assistant
to President Barack Obama on Native American affairs.
Not bad for a woman who started out as a 15 year-old single
mom struggling to educate herself while supporting her daughter.
Diver, a big advocate for self- sufficiency and advocacy for
others, began working for the tribe in 2003 and was elected in 2007
as the first female leader of the Fond du Lac Band. A graduate of
the University of Minnesota-Duluth, she also holds a master's degree
in public administration from the Kennedy School of Government at
"I am excited by the opportunity to have a wider impact in Indian
Country under President Obama's Administration, which has shown
unprecedented support for Indian Country," she said in her letter
to the tribe.
She also expressed her gratitude and faith to tribal members
for their support of her leadership.
In the letter, she said that her last day will be November 13;
Vice-Chairman Wally Depuis will likely serve as interim chair.