We make our decisions as if our ancestors were watching us; and they are
The Coeur d'Alene Tribe and all tribal governments operate and exercise their legal authority under their inherent sovereignty as defined in the Constitution of the United States.
Tribal government is established much in the same way as the federal and state governments, with executive, legislative and judicial branches. The Coeur d'Alene Tribal Council operates on a parliamentary system. Seven council members are elected by vote of tribal membership and the council elects the chairman.
The legacy handed down from generations past is that of responsible, fair-minded and even-handed leadership.
"How will this benefit the Coeur d'Alene tribe?" Is often the first question asked by Tribal Chairman Ernie Stensgar. In the early 1970's, the tribe began taking over governance and services operations from the Bureau of Indian Affairs. With Stensgar, the council and those who have proceeded them, the question of benefit has always been asked and answered. In these past two and one half decades, tribal employment has grown from a total of three to more than 400.