PORTLAND, Ore. – Babtist (Paul) Lumley, a member of the Yakama Indian Nation and 23-year veteran of American Indian policy, is returning to the Columbia Basin after a five year absence to serve as the executive director for the Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission.
Lumley, 45, has been serving as the executive director of the National American Indian Housing Council in Washington, D.C. for the past two-and-a-half years.
Leaders of CRITFC’s member tribes – the Warm Springs and Umatilla tribes, the Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation, and the Nez Perce Tribe – selected Lumley to become the ninth executive director in the commission’s 32-year history after assessing a field of impressive candidates. He will take the reins at CRITFC July 1.
“Returning to CRITFC as the executive director is an enormous honor,” Lumley said. “I appreciate the trust placed in me by the tribes to protect our treaty Indian fishing rights. I come from a long family history of tribal fishermen and fished the Columbia River regularly with my father. I know the management forums and the legal forums. I plan on bringing all that experience to bear in this position.”
Lumley returns to CRITFC with substantial Columbia Basin experience coupled with strong national Indian policy credentials. Prior to his tenure with the NAIHC, he spent three years at the Pentagon preceded by 17 years with the Portland-based CRITFC. Lumley’s CRITFC career began in 1987 as a fisheries biology intern eventually rising to a managerial position. Lumley took an inter-governmental personnel option in 2004 to become the senior tribal liaison with the U.S. Department of Defense’s Installations and Environment Program.
”We’re glad to see Paul coming home to the Columbia,” said N. Kathryn “Kat” Brigham, CRITFC chair. “He’ll make a good addition to our family. His knowledge on the commission, the four tribes and the issues will able him to hit the ground running.”
Lumley succeeds Olney Patt Jr. who served for five years before returning to the Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Warm Springs Indian Reservation last August. Rob Lothrop, interim executive director since Patt’s departure, will continue until Lumley’s arrival.