The Full Color 50


/ Policy Professionals

Protecting and promoting culture takes strong policy. Brian’s experience in Washington, D.C. covered everything from telecommunications to mascot issues — no cake walk any way you cut them. At Arizona State University, his work infuses Native knowledge in the academy, and engages Tribal Nations in building community partnerships.


Brian’s Bio:

Brian Howard is a Research & Policy Analyst with the American Indian Policy Institute (AIPI) at Arizona State University. He currently provides analyses of various infrastructure and sovereignty issues relevant to tribal communities; manages AIPI’s Legislative and Administrative Policy Update tracking federal and Arizona State government actions affecting tribal communities; and is co-investigator for an AIPI tribal technology research project to collect data on telecommunications availability on tribal lands. Brian also serves as the National Congress of American Indians’ (NCAI) appointed representative to the Department of Homeland Security, SAFECOM Executive Committee and the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet), Public Safety Advisory Committee (PSAC) to represent tribal interests and relay tribal concerns regarding public safety communications issues on tribal lands. In his role as the NCAI appointed representative to the FirstNet PSAC, Brian also chairs its Tribal Working Group (TWG), which is comprised of regional representatives from tribal governments, organizations, and public safety/emergency management associations. Since assuming chairmanship of the FirstNet TWG in February 2018, Brian has led the group in developing tribal-specific recommendations regarding tribal public safety communications as well as the creation of a Tribal Consultation Policy that was formally recognized by FirstNet in October 2018.

Prior to joining the AIPI team in November 2016, Brian served over five years as a Legislative Associate with NCAI in Washington, DC. Working on behalf of American Indian and Alaska Native tribal governments across the U.S., Brian’s work included advocating tribal policy initiatives in Congress, the Administration, and the White House on matters regarding Telecommunications, Government Contracting, and Cultural Protections (Sacred Places, Eagle Feather/Eagle Protections, NAGPRA, and Mascot issues). Brian’s work experience has also included numerous DC based research and policy internships in the federal government and non-profit sectors, as well as with the New Mexico House of Representatives and the Gila River Indian Community Council’s Office.

Brian graduated from the University of New Mexico in 2009 with his Bachelor of Arts degree in Native American Studies focusing on Federal Indian Law and Policy with a minor in Political Science. He is Akimel O’odham, Tohono O’odham, and Piipash, and an enrolled member of the Gila River Indian Community where he grew up in the Komatke District.