Sullivan Hall 413
(206) 398-4074


B.A., Western Reserve University, 1967
J.D., University of Cincinnati, 1970
LL.M., George Washington University, 1972


Contemporary Issues in Indian Law Seminar
Tribal Governmental Gaming Law


Spring 2016

  • Contemporary Issues in Indian Law  (INDL-380-A)

        Eric D. Eberhard

        Distinguished Indian Law Practitioner in Residence and Senior Fellow, Center for Indian Law and Policy


        Eric D. Eberhard is a Distinguished Indian Law Practitioner in Residence at the Law School at Seattle University. From 1995 to 2009 he was a partner in the Seattle office of Dorsey and Whitney LLP. He received his B.A. degree from Western Reserve University in 1967; a J.D. degree from the University of Cincinnati in 1970 and an LL.M. from George Washington University in 1972. He has been actively engaged in the practice of Indian Affairs law since 1973, including employment in legal services, private practice and as the Deputy Attorney General of the Navajo Nation and Executive Director of the Navajo Nation Washington Office. His practice has involved all aspects of the representation of Indian tribes, organizations, individuals and entities doing business with Indian tribes in federal, state and tribal judicial, legislative and administrative forums.

        From 1989 to 1995 he served as the General Counsel and Staff Director on the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs for Senator John McCain of Arizona. In that capacity he had direct responsibility for legislation relating to the protection of the environment on Indian lands, Indian cultural resources protection, gaming, water rights, self-determination and self-governance, tribal courts and economic development.

        In December, 2000, the U. S. Senate confirmed President Clinton's appointment of Mr. Eberhard to the Board of Trustees of the Morris K. Udall Foundation. President Bush nominated Mr. Eberhard for a second term on the Board in 2005 and he was confirmed by the Senate in 2007. From 2001 to 2011 he chaired the Board's Committee on the Native Nations Institute. From 2011 to 2015, he served as Chairman of the Board of Trustees.  In 2015, President Obama nominated Mr. Eberhard to another term on the Board of Trustees. He served as the Vice-Chairman of the Native American Concerns Committee of the American Bar Association's Committee on Individual Rights and Responsibilities from 2002-2015 and is a Life Fellow of the American Bar Foundation.  Mr. Eberhand is an Associate Justice of the Court of Appeals of the Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua and Suislaw Indians in Oregon. He is a frequent speaker at various academic and CLE programs.

        He has been recognized by Best Lawyers in America and Chambers. At Dorsey & Whitney he was recognized as the Partner of the Year, the Diversity Partner of the Year and the Pro Bono Partner of the Year. He has been honored by the United South and Eastern Tribes, the Navajo Nation and its courts, Dine Community College, The Intertribal Council of Arizona, the National Indian Gaming Association, the National Association of Indian Legal Services Programs, the Intertribal Timber Council and the American Indian Religious Freedom Coalition for outstanding service and contributions.  In 2013 Mr. Eberhard was presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Northwest Indian Bar Association.

        Recent Activity

        Students take third place in national Indian law moot court competition

        March 09, 2015
        Team Steel Eyes — also known as Seattle University School of Law students Jocelyn McCurtain and Drew Pollom — took third place at the National Native American Law Students Association Moot Court Competition this past weekend.

        Environmental law seminar sees river restoration work up close

        October 31, 2014
        On a rainy Saturday in October, a group of students left their laptops at Sullivan Hall, donned boots and wool caps, and made their way out to the Olympic Peninsula to witness the historic restoration efforts underway on the Elwha River. The students are learning about the restoration in a seminar called Advanced Environmental Law and Advanced Indian Law.

        Symposium imagines different future for Indian lands in trust

        September 29, 2014
        The care and keeping of 18 million acres of forest land, held in trust for Native Americans by the federal government for more than a century, will be the focus of an important symposium this week at Seattle University School of Law.