Governor George Rivera, Native American Leader, Joins NAFSA Board of Directors to Advance Tribal Economic Development through Online Lending

Posted by on Oct 10, 2013 in Press Release | 0 comments

WASHINGTON (October 7, 2013) – As the Native American Financial Services Association (NAFSA) continues fighting to preserve tribes’ sovereign rights through strong businesses that are adequately regulated by tribal entities, NAFSA is pleased to announce the addition of Governor George Rivera, noted Native American Leader, to its board of directors.

Rivera currently serves as Governor of the Pueblo of Pojoaque in northern New Mexico, where he serves as a political leader, cultural preservationist, artist, and art instructor, among many other roles.

“It is a great honor for me to join this prestigious organization which is so dedicated to protecting tribes’ sovereign rights to pursue meaningful economic development through every available avenue,” stated Governor Rivera. “I look forward to working with NAFSA to advance our shared priorities and continue bringing real economic advancement to Indian country.”

“As one of Indian country’s most noted leaders, we are honored to have Governor Rivera’s presence on our board of directors,” said Barry Brandon, Executive Director of NAFSA. “His reputation as a respected leader and the perspective he brings from his various responsibilities will be a unique asset as we pursue our mission to protect tribal sovereign rights.”

Governor Rivera has served as Governor of his Pueblo for nine years, after serving as Lieutenant Governor since 1992. In his current role, he oversees the Pueblo’s economic and community development, giving him unique experience as NAFSA continues advocating for the protection of Native American sovereign rights through economic development.

Governor Rivera is also a prominent and internationally-recognized Native American artist who has been teaching and sculpting art for over 20 years. His work centers primarily on monumental stone and clay culture, painting, and architectural design. Rivera is a graduate of the California College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland, California, the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and the Lacoste School of Arts in Lacoste, France. His work is in many international collections.

He also serves as Executive Director of the Poeh Cultural Center and President of the Board of the Directors for Buffalo Thunder Incorporated, Pueblo of Pojoaque Enterprise Corporation, Pojoaque Gaming Incorporated, Pueblo of Pojoaque Development Corporation, and the Pueblo of Pojoaque Commercial Development Corporation.

Governor Rivera has two adult children, son PaaWee and daughter PoQueen, and two children with his wife, Felicia, son Valentino and daughter Iris Paloma. Both of his adult children have followed in his footsteps as public servants advancing the needs and priorities of Indian country. PaaWee is a Government Relations Advisor at Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP and PoQueen works for Congresswoman Michelle Lujan Grisham (D-N.M.). His wife, Felicia, serves as Director of the Pueblo of Pojoaque Education Department.


The Native American Financial Services Association (NAFSA) formed in 2012 to advocate for Native American sovereign rights and enable tribes to offer responsible online lending products. Through the protection of consumer rights and sovereign immunity, NAFSA provides vital services to tribally operated lenders serving the under-banked with better short term financial services, furthering economic development opportunities in Indian Country.

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