Attorney General Eric Holder announced today the appointment of U.S. Attorney for the District of North Dakota Timothy Q. Purdon as chair of the Native American Issues Subcommittee (NAIS) of the Attorney General’s Advisory Committee of U.S. Attorneys (AGAC). Attorney General Holder also appointed U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Oklahoma Sanford C. Coats to serve as vice chair.
“The Native American Issues Subcommittee, the oldest subcommittee of the Attorney General’s Advisory Committee, is vital to the department’s mission in Indian Country to build and sustain safe and secure communities for future generations,” said Attorney General Holder. “I am confident that U.S. Attorneys Purdon and Coats have the expertise and dedication to lead this important group as we work to fulfill the department’s role in protecting and serving this country’s first Americans.”
U.S. Attorney Purdon was appointed to the NAIS in 2010, and he served as vice chair throughout 2012. U.S. Attorney Purdon replaces U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota Brendan V. Johnson.
U.S. Attorney Coats was appointed to the NAIS in 2010, and he also served in the AGAC from 2010 through 2011. U.S. Attorney Coats continues his work with the AGAC’s Resource Allocation Working Group.
Attorney General Holder also thanked U.S. Attorney Johnson for serving as chair of the NAIS for the past three years, 2009-2012. “Brendan Johnson’s dedication and commitment to improving public safety in Indian Country will continue to positively impact tribal communities for years to come. His leadership has brought the U.S. Attorney community together to address a myriad of important issues in Indian Country, and his guidance has been an invaluable asset to this department. I look forward to my ongoing work with U.S. Attorney Johnson as a member of the AGAC.”
The AGAC was created in 1973 to serve as the voice of the U.S. Attorneys and to advise the Attorney General on policy, management, and operational issues impacting the offices of the U.S. Attorneys. The NAIS is made up of 30 U.S. Attorneys from across the United States whose Districts contain Indian Country or one or more federally recognized tribes. The NAIS focuses exclusively on Indian Country issues, both criminal and civil, and is responsible for making policy recommendations to the Attorney General of the United States regarding public safety and legal issues that impact tribal communities.