Amb. Keith M. Harper (Ret.)

Chair of the Native American Practice, Jenner and Block

Ambassador Keith M. Harper (ret.) is Chair of the Native American Practice at Jenner and Block. Prior to that he was a partner at Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton. His areas of practice include government and regulatory litigation, Native American litigation and counseling on international matters. In 2017, Harper was appointed to the ACS board of directors.

Harper served in the Obama Administration as U.S. Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva, Switzerland, and, as a citizen of the Cherokee Nation, was the first-ever member of a federally-recognized Indian tribe to serve as a U.S. Ambassador. From 2010 to 2014, Harper served as a commissioner on the President’s Commission on White House Fellowships.

Harper has been part of numerous high-profile tribal cases, including serving as class counsel for 500,000 individual Indians who sued the Departments of Interior and Treasury over government management of their trust assets, resulting in a $3.4 billion settlement agreement. He also served as lead counsel for numerous tribes suing the U.S. for mismanagement of tribal trust funds and natural resources. He has represented tribes before the National Labor Relations Board and the Western Area Power Administration.

Earlier in his career, Harper served as a litigator for the Native American Rights Fund where he started as a Skadden Fellow. He is also a member of the board of directors at Women At The Table and of the advisory board of the Artistic Freedom Initiative as well as an at-large member of the Democratic National Committee.

Harper received his J.D. from New York University and his B.A. from University of California Berkeley in sociology and psychology. He clerked for the Hon. Lawrence W. Pierce in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. He can be followed on Twitter, @AmbHarper.


Episode 24: On Native American Land

November 16, 2021