On April 24, 2024, President Joseph R. Biden nominated Danna Jackson to serve as a federal judge in the United States District Court for the District of Montana. If confirmed by the U.S. Senate, Jackson would be the first American Indian, Alaska Native, or Native Hawaiian to serve as a federal judge in Montana.

Jackson has had a long career in public service. She has worked as a tribal attorney for the Confederated Salish & Kootenai Tribes, an Assistant United States Attorney in the District of Montana in the Indian Country Crime Unit, and in legal advisory roles for the Montana Department of Natural Resources and United States Department of the Interior.

“NCAI is proud to support President Biden’s nomination of Danna Jackson to be the first-ever Native American to sit on the federal bench in the State of Montana,”‘ said National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) Executive Director Larry Wright, Jr. ‘Ms. Jackson will bring deep Indian law and policy expertise to the federal bench. NCAI urges her swift confirmation in the U.S. Senate.”

“Danna Jackson has a long track record of public service, extensive federal legal experience, and is well qualified to be a federal judge,” said Native American Rights Fund (NARF) Executive Director John Echohawk. “We commend the Biden Administration’s selection of this historic nominee and exhort her confirmation. She will be a strong addition to the federal judiciary in Montana.”

“Inclusion of Native Americans in the courts that preside over matters in Montana is critically important to advancing trust in the judicial system and the rule of law. Danna Jackson’s deep experience in Montana in criminal and civil matters and her connections to the communities she has served her whole career will be a great asset to the court,” said Matthew Archer-Beck, President of the National Native American Bar Association (NNABA).

Jackson is the fifth judicial nomination by President Biden of a Native American to the federal bench. NARF, NCAI, and NNABA have long advocated for increasing Native representation in the federal court system. It is imperative to have federal judges who understand the unique relationship between the United States and Tribal Nations and who reflect the diversity within the districts that they serve.

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