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New Mexico Law School Dean Nominated to Head Bureau of Indian Affairs

Posted Aug 7, 2012 11:26 AM CDT
By Stephanie Francis Ward

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Kevin Washburn
Courtesy of UNM
Law School

Kevin Washburn, dean of the University of New Mexico Law School, was recently nominated to head the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs.

A member of Oklahoma’s Chickasaw Nation, the Associated Press reports, Washburn has led the law school since 2009. If the nomination is confirmed, Washburn will replace Larry Echo Hawk, who resigned from the position earlier this year.

A 1993 Yale Law School graduate, Washburn clerked for 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals William Canby and was selected for the Justice Department’s Honors Program. He came to academics after serving as a federal prosecutor and general counsel for the National Indian Gaming Commission.

“I’m deeply honored–it’s an exceedingly important responsibility to serve the nation’s Indian tribes and the Indian people,” Washburn told the Albuquerque Journal.

At the same press briefing, President Obama also announced his nomination of Jenny R. Yang for commissioner of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Yang is a partner at the law firm Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC in Washington, D.C.

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