WASHINGTON, Nov. 9, 2015 – The National Indian Gaming Commission is strengthening its training and technical assistance program focusing on rural tribes with the hiring of Susan Waukon (Ho-Chunk) to the newly created position of Rural Outreach Coordinator. This will be the second position created to increase communication, facilitate coordination and enhance regulatory relationships to build on the agency’s commitment of supporting capacity and a level playing field for all tribes that pursue gaming. The first position was the Legislative Affairs and Intergovernmental Coordinator filled by Sarah Crawford in late January 2015.
“Rural gaming tribes, large and small, help create a dynamic economy and provide needed jobs and services for their people. Rural tribes have specific needs due to the demographics of their facilities. The NIGC has a responsibility to address the needs of these rural tribal gaming facilities,” said Chaudhuri. “We are committed to collaborating with rural gaming tribes to support their regulatory compliance and thereby increase their success in the industry.”
Waukon, in her new capacity, will engage with rural tribes to assist with the challenges they face from an Indian gaming regulatory perspective and advise the commission’s senior leadership on opportunities to support economic development, self-sufficiency and strong tribal governments through Indian gaming. She will begin to conduct outreach efforts in the St. Paul Region to the more than 90 rural gaming tribes in that region.
“Working together, providing insight and leveraging resources through cooperation and partnerships with a sharp focus on regulatory compliance are keys to rural economic development, tribal self-sufficiency and strong tribal governments,” said Waukon. “I was raised by my late grandparents in Wisconsin and the values they instilled have made me an advocate for helping and fostering relationships within Indian country.”
Prior to joining the NIGC Waukon was a Ho-Chunk Nation Legislator where she engaged in regular contact with other tribal leaders in Wisconsin, the Midwest region and Indian country nationwide. Waukon further worked to facilitate authentic and collaborative relationships with tribes, non-natives and federal agencies. During Waukon’s term she also served on various Ho-Chunk Nation committees providing leadership, facilitating conflict resolution and effective facilitation of corporate governance matters. Waukon graduated with a bachelor of science from the University of Wisconsin Eau Claire.
The National Indian Gaming Commission is committed to the effective regulation of the Indian gaming industry spanning more than 450 gaming establishments, associated with nearly 242 tribes across 28 states. The Commission’s dedication to compliance with the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act ensures the integrity of the $28.5 billion Indian gaming industry. To learn more, visit www.nigc.gov and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
The National Indian Gaming Commission is an independent regulatory agency established within the Department of the Interior pursuant to the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act of 1988.Download the PDF here.