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  5. Tribal Homeland Security Advisory Council

Tribal Homeland Security Advisory Council (THSAC)

The Tribal Homeland Security Advisory Council (THSAC) will provide advice and recommendations to the Secretary, through engagement with DHS components, agencies, and offices, and by producing recommendations, studies, reports, and more. Given the critical importance of how DHS engages with tribes and Tribal Nations, the Council will be charged with collaborating on all matters of homeland security as they relate to Tribal nations, including but not limited to:

  • Implementation of Executive Order 13175, Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments and the President’s January 26, 2021 Memorandum on Tribal Consultation and Strengthening Nation-to-Nation Relationships;
  • Implementation of Executive Order 14053, Improving Public Safety and Criminal Justice for Native Americans and Addressing the Crisis of Missing or Murdered Indigenous People;
  • Implementation of Executive Order 13985, Advancing Racial Equity and Support for Underserved Communities Through the Federal Government;
  • Implementation of Executive Order 12898, Federal Actions to Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations and Executive Order 13990, Protecting Public Health and the Environment and Restoring Science to Tackle the Climate Crisis;
  • Implementation and execution of the DHS’s Tribal Consultation Policy; and
  • The responsibility to uphold the Federal Government’s and the Department’s trust and treaty responsibility to Tribal Nations.
  • September 7, 2022 Press Release: DHS Establishes First-Ever Tribal Homeland Security Advisory Council

On December 1, 2022, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced the appointment of 15 members to the Tribal Homeland Security Advisory Council. 

Secretary Mayorkas has appointed the following individuals to the Council: 

  • Peter Yucupicio, Chairman, Pascua Yaqui Tribe (Chair) 
  • Kimberly Hampton, Board of Directors, Unit 4, Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians (Vice Chair) 
  • Antonio Cesar Gonzalez Jr., Director of Security, Kickapoo Traditional Tribe of Texas, Kickapoo Lucky Eagle Casino 
  • DeCota Thompson, Lieutenant, Saint Regis Mohawk Tribal Police Department 
  • Dustin Newport, Executive Officer of Protective Services, Chickasaw Nation Department of Commerce 
  • Emmalene Sitting Bear, Director, MHA Nation Emergency Operations Center, Three Affiliated Tribes of the Fort Berthold Reservation 
  • Floyd Velasquez, Administrator, Morongo Band of Mission Indians Emergency Services 
  • Harold Pierite Sr., Chief of Police, Tunica-Biloxi Police Department 
  • Jeff Hansen, Director, Community Protection, Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma 
  • Julie Kitka, President, Alaska Federation of Natives 
  • Lee Edberg, Cybersecurity Manager, Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community 
  • Lynda Zambrano, Founder and Executive Director, National Tribal Emergency Management Council and the Northwest Tribal Emergency Management Council 
  • Ned Norris, Jr., Chairman, Tohono O’odham Nation 
  • Renita DiStefano, Former Chief Information Officer, Seneca Gaming Corporation, Seneca Nation of Indians 
  • Vivian Korthuis, CEO, Association of Village Council Presidents, Native Village of Emmonak 

Pursuant to section 871(a) of the Homeland Security Act of 2002, 6 U.S.C. § 45 l(a), the Secretary of Homeland Security (Secretary) hereby establishes the THSAC for the purposes set forth herein. In recognition of the special relationship between Tribal Nations and the Federal Government, and the sensitive nature of the subject matter involved, the Secretary hereby exempts the THSAC from Public Law 92-463, the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA), 5 U.S.C. App. 

For questions or concerns, please email TribalHSAC@hq.dhs.gov

Last Updated: 05/28/2024
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