Diane Humetewa, a two-time Arizona State University graduate and member of the Hopi Indian Tribe in northeastern Arizona has been nominated by President Obama for the position of U.S. district judge.
On January 28 a hearing was held before the Senate Judiciary Committee where Humetewa was confirmed as a nominee for district judge in Arizona.
In achieving this position, Humetewa will be the first female Native to be on the Federal bench. Sen. John McCain (R-Arizona) who recommended Humetewa for both positions states, “Ms. Humetewa’s nomination is truly historic.”
If appointed, Humetewa wishes to modify the sentencing guidelines and penalties on assault cases in Indian country. In her experience she feels that Indians are sentenced more severely in Native courts than non-natives in state courts.
As a Native woman, this nomination and possibly appointing gives me hope for Indian country as well as America in changing the standards and limitations of Native people in government roles.