|Courtesy Native American Rights Fund|
Whiteman Runs Him brought her experience as an attorney to NARF after serving on the Crow Tribe of Montana for six years, first as deputy executive counsel and then as joint lead counsel. She is one of six female attorneys at NARF, and notes the male-dominated field as one challenge with which she's had to contend. The other is lack of awareness of Indian law and tribal sovereignty.
“This was a challenge and frustration during law school, where we would read a very few cases that addressed Indian law-related issues, but not talk about the facts that led to the dispute before a court—the problematic relationship between the U.S. and the Indigenous Peoples of the land,” Whiteman Runs Him told Indian Country Today. “In practice today, it is always a challenge to bear in mind that many judges and lawmakers have little, if any, awareness of the legal status and the history of Indian tribes and Indian peoples and our values and cultures that remain important today.”