Robert Odawi Porter is an expert in the field of American Indian law and has dedicated his 20-year legal career to protecting and expanding the rights of indigenous nations and peoples. He joined the firm on January 1, 2013, following the completion of his term as the 67th president of the Seneca Nation of Indians. Robert also served the Seneca Nation for nine years as its chief legal counsel, holding the position of attorney general and later acting as senior policy advisor and counsel.
During his career, Robert has represented both private Indian-owned businesses and Fortune 500 corporations. Focusing on complex legal and policy matters, his practice at the firm represents Indian nations, individual Indians and Indian-owned businesses, as well as companies doing business in Indian Country. Robert is a recognized expert in federal Indian law and has worked to protect Indian treaty rights throughout his career as a practicing attorney.
Before serving as Seneca Nation president, Robert spent more than 10 years as a tenured law professor at the University of Kansas, the University of Iowa and Syracuse University. He is the author of numerous scholarly publications focusing on indigenous law and governance, tribal sovereignty, and the cultural, political and legal impacts of Euro-American colonization on indigenous peoples. Robert has lectured widely at universities, professional conferences and tribal events. He has also been an active media contributor, and served as a consulting expert and expert witness in matters pending before US and Indian tribal courts.
Robert is a graduate of Syracuse University and Harvard Law School. He started his legal career working at the global law firms of Dickstein Shapiro in Washington, DC, and Baker & Hostetler in Cleveland. He is a member of the Heron Clan of the Seneca Nation and was raised on the Nation’s Allegany Territory.
Constitutional Law, including Aboriginal and Native Law Practice:
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