Tribal Government

About Tribal Government

The Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians is one of nine federally recognized Indian Tribal Governments in the State of Oregon, and one of more than 550 federally recognized Indian Tribal Governments in the country. The Cow Creek Tribal Nation, located in Southwestern Oregon, is governed by an elected eleven-member council known as the Tribal Board of Directors. The Tribe maintains contracts with the Federal government to operate programs for the benefit of the membership of the Tribe. As a sovereign entity, the Tribal government has governing power similar to that of the State level of government, as well as a governing Constitution.

The Cow Creek Constitution states that it was adopted “…to form effective Tribal government, to secure and protect the powers inherent in our sovereign status and guaranteed to us by treaty and Federal law, to preserve our culture and Tribal identity, to promote the social and economic welfare of our people, to secure, protect, and develop our common resources, to maintain peace and order and safeguard individual rights, and to advance our mutual welfare.”

Tribal Departments

The most important concern for the Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians is the well-being of its members, as affirmed in two of the Tribe’s central documents.

The Cow Creek Constitution states that the Tribe seeks “to promote the social and economic welfare of our people, to secure, protect, and develop our common resources, …and to advance our common welfare.”

The Mission Statement also agrees on this, as it asserts that it “upholds … the general welfare of the Tribal membership, and serves to provide for the long-term economic needs of the Tribe and its members…”

To this end, the Tribe has developed a variety of departments to further the cause of maintaining Tribal member well-being, continuing the Tribe’s economic and social development, and preserving cultural and natural resources.

Administrative Government Services

This branch of administrative services is the primary steward of the Tribal Roll, a record of all those who are members of the Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians. Additionally, they provide certain benefits, aid, and guidance to Tribal members.

Cow Creek Health and Wellness Center

Health, whether it be physical, mental, behavioral, or otherwise, is one of the core elements of well-being. To safeguard the health of our Tribal members, the Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians maintains two health clinics that Tribal members can go to for medical aid. One is located next to the Government Offices in Roseburg, Oregon, and the other is located in Canyonville, Oregon. For more information, please call either the North Clinic at 541-672-8533 or the South Clinic at 541-839-1345.

Cultural Resources Program

Our cultural history and traditions have shaped us as a people, and the Cultural Resources Program works hard to help modern-day Tribal members connect with their Tribe’s traditional ways. This program focuses on discovering, restoring, and preserving the Tribe’s culture, so that they can share it amongst Tribal members through cultural arts, events, and our traditional language, Takelma.

Education Department

In addition to physical and spiritual health, the Tribe tries to foster the education and success of our members. The Education Department strives to provide educational opportunities for our Tribal members, from early reading classes for children to scholarships for Tribal members seeking higher education.

Elders Program

The Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians holds a deep respect for our Tribal Elders. This program seeks to honor our Elders by providing a variety of benefits and services to our Elders, so that the younger generations can continue to learn from their wisdom and example.

Emergency Management Program

This program exists to prepare and strengthen the Tribe’s members, Government Services, and Enterprises against any event or occurrence that may threaten the health, safety, property, or other interest of the Tribe. It follows the principles of Emergency Management adopted by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), as well as those of the Department of Homeland Security and Homeland Security Presidential Directives. Visit the Cow Creek Emergency Management page by clicking here.

Human Services

This department offers a variety of services to Tribal members to ensure that they have the necessities of life. These services include counseling, legal services, financial consulting, and much more.

Natural Resources Department

The Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians’ culture and history is tied directly to the land of Oregon; even the name comes from a life-giving river. The Natural Resources Department works to protect, preserve, and restore the flora, fauna, and earth of our native Oregon, to keep the connection to cultural sites and history alive and well, and to ensure a bright future for coming generations.

Tribal Housing Program

The Wi’līⁱ Housing Program takes its name from the Takelma word for “house.” It administers a wide variety of services to Tribal members to ensure that they have one of the necessities of well-being: shelter.

Veterans Program

The Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians has a deep honor and respect for veterans. Their service and sacrifice does not go unremembered, and this program seeks to preserve that honor, and provide opportunities for our honored warriors.

Tribal Court

The mission of the Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians Tribal Court is to provide to the Tribe, Tribal members, and others, access to justice that is administered in a fair, equitable, and respectful manner under the law.

Established by the Tribal Board, the Tribal Court system consists of a Chief Judge, Appellate Judges, Peacemakers, Tribal Court Administrator, and Tribal Court Clerk. The Court has civil and criminal jurisdiction as set forth by the Tribal Constitution, Tribal Codes, and Tribal Board.

All persons seeking to appear before the Tribal Courts, other than pro se, are required to be first admitted to the Cow Creek Tribal Bar. The Tribal Bar admission application, Tribal codes, and Tribal constitution may be obtained by contacting the Tribal Court Clerk at 541-672-9405.

Notice: The Tribal Court Clerk is not licensed to practice law, and is not permitted to give legal advice on any legal matters. Any person needing assistance in preparing legal documents should consult an attorney admitted to the Tribal Bar.

Various Other Programs

The Tribe provides many other programs for its membership as well, such as: burial assistance, a food pantry, emergency assistance, and more.

If you are a member of the Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians and want to know more, please click on the “Login” button in the upper-right corner of the screen to access the Tribal section of the website.