Yvette Roubideaux, MD, MPH (Rosebud Sioux) is the Director of the Policy Research Center at the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI). The mission of the NCAI Policy Research Center is to provide tribal leaders with the best available knowledge to make strategically proactive policy decisions in a framework of Native wisdom that positively impact the future of Native peoples. Her prior work includes research, education, health systems administration and policy development in the areas of American Indian/Alaska Native health and the quality of diabetes care. She served in the Obama Administration as a Senior Advisor to the HHS Secretary for American Indians and Alaska Natives and as the Director of the Indian Health Service (IHS). She is an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Health Systems, Management, and Policy in the Colorado School of Public Health at the University of Colorado, and her previous academic appointments include Clinical Professor and Associate Dean for Diversity, Inclusion and Leadership at the Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine at Washington State University, and Assistant Professor at the University of Arizona College of Medicine and Zuckerman College of Public Health. Dr. Roubideaux served as the co-director of the Coordinating Center for the IHS Special Diabetes Program for Indians Diabetes and Cardiovascular Disease Prevention Demonstration Projects, directed training programs to encourage American Indian and Alaska Native students to enter health and research professions, is a founder of the Native Research Network, Inc., and served as President of the Association of American Indian Physicians. She is an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine. Dr Roubideaux received her undergraduate, medical, and public health degrees at Harvard, is the author of several peer-reviewed research publications, and co-edited the 2001 book Promises to Keep: Public Health Policy for American Indians and Alaska Natives.
Gwynne Evans-Lomayesva, MPP (Snow Clan, Hopi) is a Researcher at the NCAI Policy Research Center. She received her Bachelor’s degree from Brown University in Political Science: International Comparative Policies. Her final undergraduate research paper analyzed jurisdictional conflicts highlighted by undocumented immigration across the U.S./Mexico border through tribal lands. She earned her Master’s degree in Public Policy from King’s College London. Her Master's dissertation explored the concept of sovereignty and questioned the limitations on expressed sovereignty. She came to the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, where she worked on research related to global affairs and science policy. As a Researcher with the NCAI Policy Research Center, she conducts research and data analysis on a broad range of issues to inform tribal policy and strategic priorities. She leads the NCAI Policy Research Center Census Information Center, serves as Chair for the national Census Information Center network, works on a National Academy of Sciences expert group on the Census Disclosure Avoidance System, and serves on seeral additional groups related to Census privacy algorithms for NCAI.
Sierra Watt, MA (Pechanga Band of Luiseño) is a Research Associate and most recently was a 2019-2020 Wilma Mankiller Fellow for the NCAI Policy Research Center. Sierra is a political science doctoral candidate at the University of Kansas where her research examines the representation of women in contemporary Native American tribal governments. She holds a BA in political science from Pepperdine University and an MA in political science from the University of Kansas, as well as two graduate certificates in Indigenous Studies and Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. Sierra was a Ford Foundation Dissertation Fellow and a Cobell Graduate Summer Research Fellow. She previously served as editorial manager for the Native American & Indigenous Studies Journal and interned with the University Press of Kansas and Great Oak Press. Her writing has been published in the Women, Gender & Families of Color, Journal of Human Trafficking, News from Native California, and Transmotion. She is excited to put her research skills to use for Indian Country as a part of the NCAI Policy Research Center team.