Cherokee Nation Citizen Honored for Role in VAWA Reauthorization

Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians Tribal Council Chairwoman Terri Henry, right, honors Cherokee Nation citizen and employee Kim Teehee, second from left, for her work in the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act.

Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians Tribal Council Chairwoman Terri Henry, right, honors Cherokee Nation citizen and employee Kim Teehee, second from left, for her work in the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act.

Published September 4, 2015

TAHLEQUAH, OKLAHOMA — Cherokee Nation citizen and Cherokee Nation Businesses Vice President of Government Relations Kim Teehee was recently honored by the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians for her role in the reauthorization process of the Violence Against Women Act.

Teehee, who then served as the first-ever senior policy advisor for Native American affairs for President Barack Obama’s administration, was instrumental in advising the president’s team and working with advocates on how to prosecute non-Natives who abuse Native women on tribal lands.

EBCI officials presented Teehee with a traditional basket at the recent Tri-Council meeting in Cherokee, North Carolina, after tribal leaders saw a play centered on VAWA.

“It’s truly humbling to receive this honor from the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, and to have been  part of such a wonderful collaboration that championed Native women’s rights and was able to ignite change,” Teehee said. “The reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act was a major victory for all of Indian Country and will resonate for many generations to come.”

Teehee now serves as the vice president of government relations for Cherokee Nation Businesses and government relations executive director for Cherokee Nation. Before serving in the White House, she was an advisor to Rep. Dale Kildee (D-MI), co-chair of the U.S. House of Representatives Native American Caucus. Teehee also served the bi-partisan caucus for more than a decade and helped make legislative progress on an array of Native American issues.

“Kim has long been a strong voice in Indian Country on women’s issues,” said Cherokee Nation Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr. “We are proud of her work on VAWA and pleased that a Cherokee Nation citizen contributed so much to protecting victims of domestic violence.”

Teehee most recently worked for a Native American legislative policy firm in Washington, D.C., before accepting her position with the tribe in September 2014.

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