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Mary Beth Jäger (Citizen Potawatomi) is a research analyst for the Native Nations Institute (NNI) at the Udall Center for Studies in Public Policy at the University of Arizona.
Mary Beth’s work at the UA’s NNI expands across a diverse range of indigenous governance areas. Some of those areas include tribal justice systems, citizen entrepreneurship and community development financial institutions. Recently, her research focuses on the use of tradition and culture in tribal child welfare codes and how Native nations are using their sovereignty to protect their children. Also, she is one of collaborators on an evaluation of the Center for Contemporary Native Arts at the Portland Art Museum, which received an Institute for Museum and Library Services grant. She assists in providing monthly updates about UA’s NNI work to the public.
Jäger earned a BA at Carroll College in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages and MSW from the George Warren Brown School of Social Work at Washington University in St. Louis.
She hopes the research will strengthen Native people and nations and empower sustainability.
Areas of Expertise and Research Interests
Projects & Programs
Starks, Rachel Rose, Adrian T. Smith, and Mary Beth Jäger. 2016. Tribal Child Welfare Codes as Sovereignty in Action: A Guide for Tribal Leaders. In This version of the document was prepared for the 2016 NICWA annual conference edited by Miriam Jorgensen and Stephen Cornell. Tucson and Portland: Native Nations Institute and National Indian Child Welfare Association.
Starks, Rachel, Adrian Tobin Smith, and Mary Beth Jäger. 2015. Protecting our Children Through Tribal Law: A Review of 100+ Tribal Child Welfare Codes. Tucson: Native Nations Institute and National Indian Child Welfare Association.
Smith, Adrian Tobin, Mary Beth Jäger, and Rachel Starks. 2015. Protecting Our Children Through Tribal Law: A Review of 100+ Tribal Child Welfare Codes (Part II). Tucson: Native Nations Institute and National Indian Child Welfare Association.
Jäger, Mary Beth, Rachel Rose Starks, Adrian T. Smith, and Miriam Jorgensen. 2015. "Culture and Law: Preliminary Findings in a Review of 100+ Tribal Welfare Codes" The Judges' Page Newsletter, Summer.