The Harvard Native American Law Students Association (NALSA) is a student-run organization dedicated to fostering a supportive atmosphere for Native American students at Harvard Law School, and is composed of Native American law students and students interested in issues affecting the Native community. NALSA first and foremost strives to provide a support system for indigenous law students by providing academic support and opportunities—including participation in the National NALSA Moot Court Competition—and social events. NALSA also works to promote campus discourse on Federal Indian and tribal law issues, support student and faculty inquiry into these areas of law, and recruit Native students to HLS.

The year 2016-2017, was an exciting one for us. Our events included:

  • A series of dinners/lunch talks with leaders in the field of Native legal issues, including: Professor Joseph Singer (Harvard Law School), Maggie McKinley (The University of Pennsylvania Law School), Professor Robert Anderson (University of Washington), and David Smith of Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP.
  • A screening of “Tribal Justice” and coffee chat with Producer Ruth Cowan and Chief Justice Abby Abinanti of the Yurok Tribe. Tribal Justice is a one-hour documentary about a little-known, underreported but effective criminal justice reform movement in America: the efforts of tribal courts to create alternative systems of justice.
  • A coffee chat with Standing Rock Tribal Councilman, Chad Harrison, about the issues affecting his tribe and their plans going forward regarding DAPL.
  • Participation in the 22nd Annual Harvard Powwow!
  • A trip to the Federal Native American Bar Association Conference in Scottsdale, AZ.
  • A trip to the D.C. Indian Law Conference in Washington, D.C.
  • Admitted Students dinners and various other social events.
  • In 2016, Harvard NALSA was voted National NALSA Chapter of the year!

If you have any questions about NALSA, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at nalsa@mail.law.harvard.edu. We look forward to seeing you all soon!


Chris Childers and Leilani Doktor
2017 – 2018 Harvard NALSA Executive Board