Law Seminars International Presents

A Two-Day Conference on Successful Techniques for

Energy Development on Tribal Lands

In collaboration with the National Congress of American Indians and the Council of Energy Resource Tribes

July 17 & 18, 2007
Hotel Washington in Washington, DC


Register      Download PDF Brochure

Who Should Attend

Attorneys, tribal and government representatives, decision makers in energy, and financial institution executives

Why Attend

~Indian tribes are exploring and evaluating energy resource potential for their own tribal facilities and commercial enterprises as well as developing tribally based, self-sufficient, non-grid power generation. Additionally, energy and utility companies are increasingly evaluating and forming strategic alliances or ventures with tribes to develop our nation's energy resources. ~Continuing in the Law Seminars International tradition of assembling tribal energy programs that are pertinent and comprised of top-level faculty actually involved in policy work and implementation, LSI is bringing this conference to the legislative doorstep of our nation's capitol. This conference will provide tribal leaders and economic development planners, attorneys, program managers and industry representatives with the major issues in tribal energy development. It will cover in depth the roles of the U.S. Department of Energy, Department of Interior and the Department of Agriculture. Participants will also gain perspectives from retired senators still actively involved in tribal energy development. Participants will be briefed on successful strategies to develop tribal energy projects, tips for funding, as well as the current legislative landscape for developing energy on Indian lands. ~ Program Co-Chairs: Douglas MacCourt, Esq. and Gregory Smith, Esq.

What You Will Learn

- Federal energy policy and the promotion of tribal energy development - Keys to successful transactions and what makes a tribal energy project attractive to investors - Tribal lands issues: Points of conflict and means of resolution - Resources for innovation: Working with the U.S. Department of Energy - Case studies of tribal renewable projects - Meeting the nation's energy needs - Current federal legistive issues that support tribal energy development - Assistance for tribal energy development from the U.S. Department of the Interior - Tips for finding funding - Developing new coal-fired generation: The Desert Rock Energy Project - Research and development opportunities and energy partnerships

What Attendees Have Said About Similar Programs

- Extremely helpful. - A lot of the information presented was very informative. Made some good contacts. - This was one of the best conferences I have ever attended. The content was excellent as were presentations.


Tuesday, July 17, 2007

8:00 am Registration and Continental Breakfast
8:30 am Introduction
  Douglas MacCourt, Esq., Program Co-Chair
Ater Wynne LLP / Portland, OR
  Gregory Smith, Esq., Program Co-Chair
Johnston & Associates / Washington, DC
8:40 am Invocation
  Joe Shirley, Jr., President
Navajo Nation / Window Rock, AZ
8:45 am Federal Energy Policy and the Promotion of Tribal Energy Development
  Energy development and tribal self determination
  Joe Shirley, Jr., President
Navajo Nation / Window Rock, AZ
  Federal policies to promote energy development in Indian country; need for diversification of energy sources; key legislation in the 110th Congress
  The Hon. J. Bennett Johnston, (Ret.), Former Chairman, Senate Energy Committee
Johnston & Associates / Washington, DC
9:45 am Assistance for Tribal Energy Development from the U.S. Department of the Interior
  Implementing EPAct05 to promote tribal energy development and exploration
  Jerry Gidner
U.S. Department of Interior, Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) / Washington, DC
  Funding opportunities; incentives for tribal energy development; streamlining the regulatory process
  Darryl Francois, Senior Program Analyst
U.S. Department of Interior / Washington, DC
10:45 am Break
11:00 am Tribal Lands Issues: Points of Conflict and Means of Resolution
  EPAct05 impact on tribes and non-tribal developers; energy corridors; DOE and DOI Right of Way Study
  Paul G. Moorehead, Esq., Former Chief Counsel & Staff Director
US Senate Committee of Indian Affairs, Drinker Biddle & Reath / Washington, DC
  Chris Clark-Deschene, Esq.
Schaff & Clark-Deschene LLC / Boulder, CO
12:00 pm Lunch (on your own)
1:15 pm Resources for Innovation: Working with the U.S. Department of Energy
  Funding and incentives from DOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy; Orientation to EERE's Tribal Energy Program (TEP)
  Thomas W. Sacco, Esq., Director, Tribal Energy Program
U.S. Department of Energy / Washington, DC
  Case study of DOE grant funds to assist tribal utility and renewable energy; entity formation, tribal authority, attracting private capital, energy capacity
  Dean B. Suagee, Esq.
Hobbs, Straus, Dean & Walker, LLP / Washington, DC
  Practical aspects of making the tribal partnership work
  David Lester, Executive Director
Council of Energy Resource Tribes / Denver, CO
  Contracting with federal agencies, tribes and DOE
  Karen J. Atkinson, Esq.
Native American Contractors Association / Washington, DC
3:15 pm Break
3:30 pm Case Studies of Tribal Renewable Projects
  Solar: Native American Photovoltaics; select projects in the Southwest U.S.
  Gregory A. Kiss, Solar Architect
Kiss + Carthcart, Architects / Brooklyn, NY
  Biomass: Warm Springs Forest Products Industries; Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs Reservation
  James D. Noteboom, Esq.
Karnopp Peterson LLP / Bend, OR
  Wind: Dine' Wind Project, Navajo Nation
  Roger M. Freeman, Esq., Managing Director, Energy Ventures
Citizens Enterprises Corporation / Boston, MA
  Renewable energy in rural america: resources from the U.S. Department of Agriculture
  Tedd Buelow, Acting Native American Coordinator--Office of Rural Development
U.S. Department of Agriculture / Washington, DC
5:30 pm End of Day One
6:00 pm Reception at Capitol Hill in Senate Committee on Indian Affairs Hearing Room
  Hosted by Holland & Knight LLP, Drinker Biddle & Reath, The Navajo Nation, The National Congress of American Indians, The Council of Energy Resource Tribes, Ater Wynne LLP and Johnston & Associates

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

8:00 am Registration and Continental Breakfast
8:30 am Forecast for Economic Growth in Indian Country
  Jacqueline Johnson, Executive Director
National Congress of American Indians / Washington, DC
9:00 am The Big Picture: Meeting the Nation's Energy Needs
  National Energy Policy and tribal economic development; the role for tribes in strategic energy reserves, international energy issues and emergency preparedness, and the future of federal policy toward coal, oil, gas, renewables and surface mining
  The Hon. Ben Nighthorse Campbell, (Ret.), Former Chairman, Senate Committee on Indian Affairs
Holland & Knight LLP / Washington, DC
9:30 am Current Federal Legislative Issues that Support Tribal Energy Development
  Summary of Congressional legislation impacting tribal energy development including accelerated depreciation extension, Indian employment tax credits, tribal tax-exempt bonds and other measures, and how tribes and businesses can get involved
  Gregory Smith, Esq., Program Co-Chair
Johnston & Associates, LLC / Washington, DC
10:00 am Break
10:15 am Getting the Deal Done: Keys to a Successful Transaction and What Makes a Tribal Energy Project Attractive to Investors
  Contracting essentials for doing business with tribes and tribal enterprises, considerations for ownership and operation of energy assets in Indian country; negotiating dispute resolution and sovereign immunity issues; maximizing investment opportunities
  Douglas MacCourt, Esq., Program Co-Chair
Ater Wynne LLP / Portland, OR
  Representing the non-tribal entity in the transaction; development agreements and joint ventures; what utility offtakers require in power purchase agreements
  Nancy A. Wodka
Bracewell & Giuliani LLP / Washington, DC
  Benefits and limitations of a Tribal Energy Resource Agreement for fossil fuel and renewable projects
  Margaret M. Schaff, Esq.
Schaff & Clark-Deschene, LLC / Boulder, CO
  Siting of power projects; developing tribal-industry agreements to address land use and natural resource issues
  Stephen J. McHugh, Esq.
Holland & Knight LLP / Washington, DC
12:15 pm Lunch (on your own)
1:30 pm Tips for Structuring an Energy Enterprise and Finding Funding
  View from the equity and venture capital markets toward investment in Indian energy projects; basic requirements for approaching lenders and investors; market trends for generation and transmission
  Thomas Whitman, Founding Partner
Whitman Group LLC / Columbus, OH
  Kathleen M. Nilles, Esq.
Holland & Knight LLP / Washington, DC
2:30 pm Developing New Coal-Fired Generation: The Desert Rock Energy Project
  The special working relationships and successful collaboration to develop this $3+ billion project; innovative contracts and resource sharing agreements, tribal and state legislative solutions to dual taxation issues; public involvement efforts
  Steven C. Begay, General Manager
Dine' Power Authority / Window Rock, AZ
  Dirk Straussfeld, Executive VP
Sithe Global Power, LLC / Houston, TX
3:30 pm Break
3:45 pm Research and Development Opportunities and Energy Partnerships
  Initiatives from Lawrence Livermore's American Indian Program; partnerships with tribes and Sandia National Laboratories to develop commercially viable energy technologies based on solar, wind, and geothermal resources
  Steven Grey, Chairman, Navajo Nation Telecommunication Regulatory Commission
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory / Livermore, CA
  Sandra K. Begay-Campbell, Program Director--Sandia Tribal Energy Program
Sandia National Laboratories / Albuquerque, NM
4:15 pm Evaluations & Adjourn


Regular tuition for this program is $995 with a group rate of $895 each for two or more registrants from the same firm. For government employees, we offer a special rate of $795. For students and people in their job for less than a year, our rate is $497.50. All rates include admission to all seminar sessions, food and beverages at breaks, and all course materials. Make checks payable to Law Seminars International.

Cancellation & Substitution

You may substitute another person at any time. We will refund tuition, less a $50 cancellation fee, if we receive your cancellation by 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday, July 10, 2007. After that time, we will credit your tuition toward attendance at another program or the purchase of a homestudy. There is a $25 cancellation fee for Course Materials orders and $50 for Homestudy orders.

Continuing Education Credits

This program qualifies for 13 VA CLE credits. Upon request, we will apply for CLE credits in other states and other types of credits.


The conference will be held at the Hotel Washington at 515 15th Street NW in Washington, DC 20004, (202) 638-5900. PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS IS A NEW LOCATION. A shuttle will run between the Hotel Washington and the Hyatt Regency (previous location). Sleeping rooms are available at the Hotel George (around the corner from the Hyatt Regency), 15 E Street NW, Washington, DC 20001, (202) 347-4200.
More about the Location
Map & Directions

If You Cannot Attend

Our complete Homestudy Course, consisting of a VHS or DVD recording and the written course materials, is available for $1005. The written course materials alone are available for $100. We will ship your homestudy order via UPS ground within two weeks after the seminar or the date we receive payment (whichever is later).
Order Homestudy

Faculty Bios

Douglas MacCourt, Program Co-Chair, partner at Ater Wynne LLP and Co-Chair of the firm's Tribal Business Practice, has represented public, private, and tribal clients on land use, natural resources, environmental and energy matters, with an emphasis on project development, facility siting, permitting and government relations.

Gregory Smith, Program Co-Chair, partner and Government Affairs Specialist at Johnston & Associates, specializes in consulting services to American Indian tribes and tribal organizations. He is Editor-in-Chief of the Native American Law Digest, and represents the Dine' Power Authority in its federal government relations work.

Karen J. Atkinson (Mandan, Hidatsa, and Tsimshian) is Executive Director of the Native American Contractors Association. Previously, she was a partner at Dorsey & Whitney LLP and Deputy Director of the National Park Service and Senior Counsel to the Senate Indian Affairs Committee.

Steven C. Begay, General Manager for the Dine' Power Authority, an enterprise of the Navajo Nation. They recently announced a business partnership to develop the Navajo Transmission Project and a partnership with Steag Power to develop a coal-fired power plant.

Sandra K. Begay-Campbell, former regent for the University of New Mexico, works at Sandia National Laboratories as a principal member of the technical staff. She leads their technical efforts in the Renewable Energy Program and assists tribes with renewable energy development.

Tedd Buelow, Acting Native American Coordinator of Rural Development for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, provides outreach on housing, utilities and business/cooperative programs for American Indian and Alaska Native customers.

The Hon. Ben Nighthorse Campbell (Ret.) (Cheyenne) joined Holland & Knight LLP after representing Colorado in the United States Senate from 1993-2005 and in the U.S. House from 1987-1993. He is one of 44 Chiefs of the Northern Cheyenne Tribe, and as Chairman of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee, he wrote the original language for the Indian Energy Section of the Energy Policy Act.

Chris Clark-Deschene, partner at Schaff & Clark-Deschene LLC, works for tribal governments and their energy enterprises and utilities. He has helped tribal leaders negotiate energy agreements including rights-of-way, leases, and development contracts. He is the in-house attorney for Dine' Power Authority.

Darryl Francois is a Senior Program Analyst with the Office of Indian Energy and Economic Development and is currently responsible for the development and implementation of Tribal Energy Resource Agreement regulations. Mr. Francois has 26 years of experience working on energy development and regulatory issues for the Department of the Interior. He obtained his B.S. degree in Physics from Bradley University and an M.S. in Geophysics from the Pennsylvania State University.

Roger M. Freeman, Managing Director of Energy Ventures for Citizens Enterprises Corporation (a subsidiary of Citizens Energy Corporation), manages for-profit energy ventures, with a primary focus on wind power development. He oversees business planning and strategy, joint venture negotiation, project finance, regulatory affairs and construction.

Steven Grey, Chairman of the Navajo Nation Telecommunication Regulatory Commission and a member on the Board of Directors for the Navajo Technical College, is with the Department of Energy's Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL). He oversees the LLNL American Indian Program and manages the DOE/LLNL field office.

Jacqueline Johnson, Executive Director of the National Congress of American Indians, the oldest and largest tribal government organization in the U.S., serves on a variety of national executive committees. She is a member of the Executive Board for the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights and a board member of Sealaska Corporation, an Alaska Native Regional Corporation.

The Hon. J. Bennett Johnston (Ret.), founding partner of Johnston & Associates, represented Louisiana as a U.S. Senator, during which he was a member and Chairman of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. He was either directly or indirectly responsible for all energy legislation considered by the Congress between 1973 and 1996.

Gregory A. Kiss, founding partner and Solar Architect at Kiss + Cathcart, Architects, does research into the functional and aesthetic improvement of photovoltaics for buildings that has led to several new products and systems. He is cofounder of Native American Photovoltaics, a non-profit venture on the Navajo reservation in Arizona.

David Lester (Muscogee Creek) is Executive Director of the Council of Energy Resource Tribes, was Commissioner for Native Americans in the Department of Health and Human Services, and the Founding President of the United Indian Development Association.

Stephen J. McHugh, senior counsel in Holland & Knight LLP's Washington, D.C. office and a member of the Indian Law Practice Group, represents Indian tribes in land and water claims and prosecuting breach of trust claims against the United States.
Full bio and contact info for Stephen J. McHugh at Holland & Knight LLP

Paul G. Moorehead, partner and member of the Indian Tribal Governments Practice Group at Drinker Biddle & Reath, focuses on federal initiatives, policies and programs that affect Indian tribal governments and Native American people, including energy and natural resources development and protection, appropriations, and tribal self-governance.

Kathleen M. Nilles, partner at Holland & Knight LLP, focuses on resolving critical tax and business organizational issues for tax-exempt and governmental entities. She is the co-author (along with Karen Atkinson) of the Tribal Business Structure Tool Kit, a project sponsored and to be published by the Interior Department's Office of Indian Energy and Economic Development.

James D. Noteboom, managing partner of Karnopp Peterson LLP, devotes his practice to representing the Warm Springs Indian Tribe. He emphasizes energy, water, environmental, land acquisition, and natural resource law.

Thomas W. Sacco, Director of the Tribal Energy Program within the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, initiated the Tribal Energy Program to address the growing interest in renewable energy technologies within Indian country.

Margaret M. Schaff, partner at Schaff & Clark-Deschene, LLC, specializes in utility, oil and gas and energy policy work for tribal governments, including the Wind River Energy Company, Umpqua Indian Utility Cooperative and the Dine' Power Authority.

The Hon. Joe Shirley, Jr., President of the Navajo Nation, is committed to serving the Navajo Nation by giving power back to the Navajo people. He has co-chaired both the Bureau of Indian Affairs/Tribal Budget Advisory Council and the Sovereign Protection Initiative.

Dirk Straussfeld, Executive Vice President of Sithe Global Power, LLC, is involved in development of energy infrastructures with a combined project volume over $2 billion, that have included large scale coal-fired power projects, combined cycle power plants and waste-to-energy facilities.

Dean B. Suagee is of counsel at Hobbs, Straus, Dean & Walker, LLP, Washington, D.C., a firm specializing in legal counsel for American Indian and Alaska Native tribal governments and tribal organizations, where he practices environmental law and cultural resources law.

Thomas Whitman, founding partner of Whitman Group LLC, was Managing Director for Morgan Keegan & Co., Inc., where he specialized in tax-exempt and taxable bond financing for Native American tribes, manufacturing companies and not-for-profit organizations.

Nancy A. Wodka, partner at Bracewell & Giuliani LLP, leads the Global Projects Group which focuses on domestic and international energy transactions, private sector infrastructure development and project financing.

Firm Links

Holland & Knight LLP