1905 Harney Street, Suite 300
Omaha, NE 68102
Enrolled Member of the Aaaniih (Gros Ventre) Tribe of the Fort Belknap Indian Community and a Descendant of the Amskapi Pikuni (Blackfeet Nation), Nakoda (Assiniboine), Cheyenne River Sioux, Crow and Little Shell Tribes.
Bachelor’s Degree in Geography Modified by Environmental Science, Dartmouth College (B.A. 1998)
Bachelor’s Degree in Native American Studies, Dartmouth College (B.A. 1998)
Master’s in Business Administration, Western Governor’s University (M.B.A 2015)
Juris Doctor, Mitchell Hamline School of Law (J.D. 2020)
South Dakota; Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Reservation; Rosebud Sioux Tribe
ASSOCIATIONS AND HONORS
Trustee, Investment Committee Chair, Native American Agricultural Fund (2022-2026); Board Member, Nakoda Aaniiih Credit Agency; National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development (NCAIED) “Native American 40 under 40” Award Recipient
Michelle’s practice focuses on transactional matters, tribal economic development, and the complexities of various agricultural and land acquisition transactions. A 5th-generation cattle rancher, she brings an especially diverse skillset to the firm providing a broad range of experience in navigating the always-changing issues and opportunities that tribes and tribal agriculture producers experience.
Along with being a key member of the firm’s agricultural practice, Michelle assists tribal enterprises in corporate code development, structure, and planning. She is also experienced in sovereign models for consumer lending and frequently assists tribes, banks, and non-bank entities with financing and regulatory matters with Indian law components. She has extensive experience in the nonprofit law sector, counseling nonprofit entities regarding corporate and tax issues, including obtaining and maintaining tax-exempt C3 and C4 status, unrelated business income tax planning and compliance, and risk management issues.
Before joining the firm, Michelle spent almost a decade as a CEO in her own tribal community, leading that organization’s tangible asset growth and large-scale development projects.