NTAA: About Us

NTAA Policy Advisory Committee

Members of the NTAA’s Policy Advisory Committee talk with attendees of the 2016 National Tribal Forum on Air Quality
Members of the NTAA’s Policy Advisory Committee talk with attendees of the 2016 National Tribal Forum on Air Quality

NTAA's Policy Advisory Committee enhances and strengthens NTAA's air quality policy support by crafting air policy and climate change policy recommendations for Tribal governments and providing policy advice to the NTAA Executive Committee. The technical and policy experts work with the NTAA Executive Committee and NTAA staff to craft Policy Response Kits, White Papers and other policy support.

The NTAA Policy Advisory Committee

Ann Marie Chischilly

Ann Marie Chischilly Ms. Chischilly is the Executive Director at the Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals (ITEP). She is responsible for managing ITEP's work with Northern Arizona University, state and federal agencies, tribes and Alaska Native villages. In 2017, ITEP celebrated 25 years serving over 95% of all the 573 Tribes and Alaskan Native Villages nationwide.

Ms. Chischilly currently serves on several federal advisory committees including the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) National Advisory Committee, the Advisory Committee for the Sustained National Climate Assessment (Now the Independent Advisory Committee on the Sustained National Climate Assessment) and EPA’s National Safe Drinking Water Council. From 2013 to 2015, Ms. Chischilly also served on Department of Interior’s Advisory on Climate Change and Natural Resource Science.

Ms. Chischilly speaks both nationally and internationally on topics of Indian Law, Environmental Law, Tradition Knowledges, Water Law and Tribes/Indigenous Peoples. She works with the United Nations on issues of the Protection of Traditional Knowledge and co-wrote, “Guidelines for the Use of Traditional Knowledge in Climate Change Initiatives”.

Before coming to ITEP, she served for over ten years as Senior Assistant General Counsel to the Gila River Indian Community (Community), where she assisted the Community in implementing the historic “Arizona Water Settlement Act” and founded the Community’s Renewable Energy Team. Ms. Chischilly is an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation (Diné). She earned her Juris Doctorate degree from St. Mary's University School of Law and a Masters in Environmental Law (LL.M) from Vermont Law School. She is licensed in Arizona and has practiced in state, district, and federal courts. She is also a member of the International Bar Association.

Dr. David LaRoche

Dr. David LaRoche Over 30 years of experience working with US EPA. Dr. LaRoche was the senior Indian Program Manager for EPA OAR, and lead author of the EPA CAA Tribal Authority Rule. Dr. LaRoche’s currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals and has many years of knowledge working with EPA and tribes on air quality policy and programmatic issues.

Pilar Thomas

Pilar Thomas Pilar Thomas (Pascua Yaqui) is Of Counsel at Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie LLP in Tucson Arizona, where she provides strategic legal advice to tribal governments and tribal enterprises on energy planning and policy, renewable energy project development and finance; federal and state energy regulatory, programs and policy efforts. Ms. Thomas previously served as the Deputy Director, Office of Indian Energy Policy and Programs at the U.S. Department of Energy, where she developed and implemented national policy and programs to promote clean energy development on Indian lands. Ms. Thomas also served as the Deputy Solicitor for Indian Affairs in the U.S. Department of the Interior, where she provided day to day legal advice and counsel to the Secretary, the Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs, and other officials of the Department on matters related to federal Indian law, tribal law, and legal issues involving Indian tribes. Over the course of her career as an attorney, Ms. Thomas was interim attorney general and chief of staff of the Pascua Yaqui Tribe, and a Trial Attorney in the U.S. Department of Justice.

Prior to her law practice, Ms. Thomas worked for fifteen years in the financial services industry for a Fortune 250 company. Ms. Thomas received her J.D. from the University of New Mexico School of Law, magna cum laude, with a Certificate in Indian Law, and her B.A. in economics from Stanford University.

Brandon Sousa

Brandon Sousa Brandon Sousa is an attorney with Jill Grant & Associates in Washington, DC, where his practice serves tribal governments in all aspects of environmental law, including the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, CERCLA, RCRA, and the Safe Drinking Water Act. He counsels tribal governments on developing their environmental legal systems and attaining primary enforcement authority from the federal government, and supports other efforts to promote tribal sovereignty, including litigation. Prior to joining Jill Grant & Associates, he worked for the National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration’s National Marine Fisheries Service in that agency’s leadership office and the Office of Protected Resources. There, among other tasks, he coordinated national environmental regulatory and permitting programs, interagency consultation and rulemaking deliberations, and Congressional and constituent affairs. Mr. Sousa served as a judicial clerk to the Honorable Mary Ellen Barbera, Chief Judge of the Maryland Court of Appeals, and holds a J.D. from Tulane University, summa cum laude, with a Certificate in Environmental Law.

Bill Auberle

Bill Auberle Dr. William M. (Bill) Auberle is a founder and Principal at EN3 Professionals, LLC, an engineering consulting firm in Flagstaff. Dr. Auberle has more than 40 years experience in environmental engineering and management. His expertise includes environmental policy and permitting processes, air quality engineering, environmental risk assessment and management, and site investigation and remediation.

Bill remains active as a Professor Emeritus at Northern Arizona University. He is co-founder and a member of the Advisory Board to the Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals (ITEP).

Previously, Bill was President of the national environmental consulting firm of Yates & Auberle, Ltd. In this capacity he directed professionals in the disciplines of environmental engineering, industrial hygiene, hydrogeology, and environmental monitoring and analysis.

Bill also has served governmental agencies as an author and administrator of environmental laws and regulations. He has directed programs in air quality management, water pollution control, radiation protection, noise control, and solid/hazardous waste management. In 1978 and 1979, he managed all environmental protection programs for the State of Colorado.

Bill’s baccalaureate degree in industrial engineering and masters degree in environmental engineering were earned at West Virginia University. He continued graduate studies at Columbia University and the University of Missouri and was awarded a Doctorate of Humane Letters at Northern Arizona University. He is a Fellow Member and Past Vice President of the Air & Waste Management Association (A&WMA) and is board certified by the American Academy of Environmental Engineers & Scientists (AAEES). He is a licensed professional engineer in Arizona, Louisiana and Ohio. Bill continues to make numerous presentations at meetings and conferences and contributes many publications in environmental and energy policy, science and engineering.