About CTER

The Council for Tribal Employment Rights (CTER) is a community based Indian owned and operated non-profit organization that is comprised of and represents the interests of over 300 Tribal and Alaska Native Villages that are covered by employment rights ordinances. CTER was founded in 1977 and is governed by a 16 member Board of Directors which consists of Tribal Employment Rights Office (TERO) representatives from 8 regions of the nation.

EPIC Award to CTER

US Secretary of Labor Robert Reich presents the EPIC Award for Exemplary Public Interest Contribution to CTER Co-Founder Conrad Edwards (center) in 1994.

CTER is acknowledged as a premier leader in the field of tribal employment rights. It has received countless public/private and tribal sector awards for outstanding community service work. Among the awards, CTER has received OFCCP’s prestigious EPIC Award for its national achievements in the field of employment rights and its cultural diversity program.

CTER’s training and consulting services are specifically tailored to meet the needs of Indian Country. The organization has provided direct on-site training and T/A to over 300 Indian tribes and Alaska Native Villages. Included among the training programs CTER offers are: Introduction to Basic TERO, Management and Operation of TERO Program, TERO Commission Training, Charge Investigation, Indian Preference in Employment/Contracting, Federal Law & Indian Preference, Sexual Harassment, Tribal workforce Utilization& Empowerment, Youth Motivation & Entrepreneurship, and Cultural Synergy-Beyond Diversity.

CTER has performed training, technical assistance and consulting service contracts for federal agencies including: ANA, BIA, IHS, EEOC, FHWA, OFCCP, USDA and HUD; states including Arizona, Alaska, California, Colorado, Washington, Idaho, Minnesota, Montana, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Dakota and others. Its list of private sector employers includes: Motorola, IBM, Boeing, ARCO and hundreds of contractors. CTER has also provided legal and Cultural Diversity Training to union organizations in Washington, Arizona, California, New York and Minnesota.

CTER Constitution and Bylaws

These documents, ratified December 9th, 2014, were developed over the last 2 years and are the first revisions to CTER’s constitution and bylaws since 1984. The board worked very hard to update their foundational documents to reflect their ongoing support to employment rights for native peoples and sovereign Indian nations and organizations in the context of today’s challenges. The constitution and bylaws were passed unanimously and represents a renewed engagement by the board to the mission and goals of CTER and all our stakeholders. Download Constitution and Bylaws.

Board of Directors

With the 2014 revisions to CTER’s constitution and bylaws, its Board of Directors moved from being an advisory board to being a governing board. As of December 8, 2015, the current Board consists of the following Directors:

Theo De La Rosa, Southwest Region, Chair
Francine Shakespeare, Rocky Mountain Region, Vice Chair
Larry Jordan, Pacific Northwest Region, Secretary
Jason John, Eastern Region, Treasurer
Brian Porter, Pacific Northwest Region
Hutch Noline, Southwest Region
Gary LaPointe, Northern Plains TERO Coalition
Martha J. Wind, Southern Plains Region
DelRay German, Northern Plains TERO Coalition
Stephanie Fisher, Rocky Mountain Alternate
Melvin Wheeler, Pacific Northwest Region Alternate
John Navarro, Ex-Officio Board Member and Co-Founder

We would like to acknowledge the leadership and accomplishment of Theo De La Rosa, who was voted by the Board to be the first woman Chairperson in the nearly 40 years of CTER’s history.

CTER makes every effort to have a Board member from each region, at this time some areas are not represented.

2015 CTER Board of Directors

The CTER Board during a 2015 National Conference award ceremony. L to R: John Navarro, Melvin Wheeler, Nick Kedrowski, Jason John, Lee Adolph, Francene Shakespeare, Lew Tobin (retired), Theo Delarosa, Hutch Noline and Larry Jordan.


The office of President deals with the day-to-day operations of the organization, arranging and carrying out training with Tribes, establishing partnerships, negotiating with government agencies and consulting with attorneys. This office been held by such leaders in the movement as John Navarro and Conrad Edwards. The current CTER President is Lee Adolph.