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Barrett, John A. “Rocky”


John A. Barrett, Jr. is a native of Shawnee, Oklahoma, and a graduate of Shawnee High School. His Potawatomi name is Keweoge, meaning, “He Leads Them Home.” Chairman Barrett has served as an elected official for the Citizen Potawatomi Nation since 1973 when he was first elected as Vice-Chairman. Tribal Chairman since 1985, Barrett is the eighth generation of his family to serve in elected office for CPN. Under his leadership, the Nation has gone from having assets totaling just $550 and less than three acres of land to an entity having an annual economic impact exceeding $550 million.

During Chairman Barrett’s administration, the Citizen Potawatomi Nation has experienced more than 15 percent average annual growth for more than 20 consecutive years. With more than 2,300 employees, Citizen Potawatomi Nation is the largest employer in Pottawatomie County, Oklahoma. He serves as the Chief Executive of the Tribe, presiding over the 16-member Tribal Legislature that enacts the laws and ordinances under which it is governed. His elected position as Tribal Chairman also requires him to direct the Tribe’s administrative functions and commercial activities. He was instrumental in the creation and adoption of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation’s current constitution and statutes, which have led to the Nation’s extended period of stability and progress.

He has guest lectured at Harvard University for the Harvard Project on American Indian Economic Development and at the Banff Center in Banff, Alberta, Canada, to the assembled Canadian First Nations on the same topics. He serves on the International Advisory Council of the Native Nations Institute founded by the Morris Udall Foundation at the University of Arizona and the Harvard Project on American Indian Economic Development. He served as a delegate of the United States Federally Recognized Tribes to the United Nations Committee on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples at The Hague, which provided the International Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People approved by the United Nations Committee on Human Rights and the United Nations General Assembly.

Education:
• Princeton University
• University of Oklahoma
• Oklahoma City University, Bachelor of Science in Business
• St. Gregory’s University, Honorary Doctorate in Commercial Services

Assumed Office: Vice-Chairman, 1973; Chairman, 1985
In Office: Present day
Preceded by: Leon Bruno
Succeeded by: N/A

Memberships/Professional Associations
• Board Member — First National Bank & Trust Co
• Past Director — Omniplex Air and Space Museum/Kirkpatrick Center
• Chairman – Board of Rainbow Development Corporation
• Past Member – Oklahoma Indian Affairs Commission
• Delegate – National Tribal Self-Governance Advisory Committee
• Delegate – National Congress of American Indians
• Past Member – Pottawatomie County Historical Society
• Past Member – National Tribal Chairman’s Association
• Founder – National Indian Action Contractor Association

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