Our Team

IDRS Inc. has assembled a team of experienced practitioners who bring people together to solve local challenges in economic development and dispute resolution.  

 

MARK THOMPSON, JD
Executive Director (Choctaw Descendant)
IDRS and The Acorn Project
Cell: (916) 803-7550 Email: mark@idrsinc.org (email Mark by clicking on this email address)


Mark provides entrepreneurial training and technical assistance to Native American entrepreneurs and works with businesses operated by Native American tribes to conduct feasibility studies, develop business plans, establish internal accounting procedures and secure grant funding to further economic development through the creation of small businesses in Indian Country.


Outside of his work for IDRS, he owns and operates a real estate business and teaches business economics and accounting at the Community College level.  Mr. Thompson completed the Juris Doctorate degree from the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law in Sacramento in 2009 and is near completing an MBA.  He lives outside Sacramento California where he and his wife Mandi operate a small ranch and are raising two children, Zane and Marina.

STEVEN HABERFELD, Ph.D.
Associate Director of Conflict Resolution IDRS
Cell: (916) 802-0243 Email: steven@indiandispute.org


Dr. Haberfeld serves as the Associate Director of Conflict Resolution. He is the senior mediator/facilitator of Indian Dispute Resolution Services. Along with a consortium of five Native American organizations, he helped found IDRS in 1989 Dr. Haberfeld has forty years experience as a community organizer, mediator, facilitator and trainer in the areas of conflict resolution, mediation and arbitration  Since 1976, Dr. Haberfeld has worked with Native leaders to resolve conflicts and effectively negotiate their interests in complex transactions with tribal and non-tribal governments and private sector interests. As IDRS’ lead trainer, he has providing more than 5,000 hours of mediation and dispute resolution training for American Indian tribes and organizations.

Prior to working with IDRS, Dr. Haberfeld served as a senior planner at the National Economic Development & Law Center as Director for the Center for Indian Economic Development.

Dr. Haberfeld has a BA in Economics and Labor Relations from Reed College in Portland Oregon, a MA in International Relations, and a Ph.D. in Public Law & Government.  

LYNN WILSON, MBA, E.G.(c)MR
(Cherokee Citizen)
Microenterprise Development Manager
IDRS Acorn Project
Cell: (918) 978-7622  Email: lynn@idrsinc.org (email Lynn by clicking her email address)


Lynn serves as IDRS’ Microenterprise Development Specialist. She has championed small businesses and entrepreneurs for 16 years working with tribal communities across Indian Country including her own tribe where she continues to provide small business support services for the Tribes’ CDFI & Commerce division.


Lynn’s work has focused on entrepreneurial training, business counseling, economic and demographic and social research related to economic development. Since 2009 she has taught part-time for the School of Business and Technology at Rogers State University and served as the lead certification trainer for the Indianpreneurship Journey curriculum while on staff at ONABEN.  Lynn received her M.B.A and Professional Certification in Entrepreneurship from Cameron University and is a certified market research specialist through the National Center for Economic Gardening. She lives in Claremore, OK with her husband Clint (also a citizen of Cherokee Nation) and their two sons, Chandler and Quinton.

CAMILLE KOSTER, MAOM

(Cherokee Citizen)
Youth Program Manager. Email: camille@idrsinc.org  (email Camille by clicking her email address)

IDRS and The Acorn Project

 

Camille serves as the Youth Program Manager. She has worked in youth development and in nonprofit for the last 18 years, both writing and facilitating camps across the nation. She has co-facilitated camps with the Drug-Free Communities National Initiative, Students Working Against Tobacco, Cherokee Nation Behavioral Health, ONABEN, the Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse, and more. Camille dedicated five years of her youth development career as the Chief Operating Officer of Girl Scouts of Eastern Oklahoma. She successfully assisted in one the largest youth entrepreneur programs as she helped build strategy and infrastructure for a cookie sale campaign that led to her local Council selling over 1 million boxes of Girl Scout Cookies in Eastern Oklahoma. She has a Masters Degree in Organizational Management.

Camille is a United States Navy Veteran and is proud to have represented the Cherokee Tribe in the military. During the time she served, only 15.4% of the military was comprised of Native American members, likewise, only 4% were female members.  She lives in Tulsa Oklahoma and is married to a Firefighter and has three children.

SHAWN NEWELL

Dine Small Farm Project Manager

Shawn brings over 25 years of professional experience in project development, management and implementation over a broad area of practice including collaborative natural resource planning; social research, evaluation and assessment; convening and facilitation; and professional writing and editing. She holds a B.S. in Watershed Management with Hydrology and Forestry emphasis (1978), an M.S. in Environmental Science and Policy (2007) with a research focus on GIS-based Landscape Habitat Modeling, and certificates in Mediation Training (2007) and Natural Resources Conservation Service Technical Service Provider Conservation Planning (2013). She has proven ability to work effectively with diverse groups and produce high-quality results within specified timelines. Her work has included projects serving Navajo Nation since 2004.

JACQUES SERONDE

Dine Small Farm Development Expert

Jacques is the Farm Expert for our work with TLE on the Navajo Nation. Jacques’s responsibilities include assisting the TLE to develop their cropping plans, farm operations, and curriculum to provide a small farm education and assistance program to the community. Because of Jacques vast knowledge, experience, and history at Navajo, Jacques is our point person when interfacing with other organizations on Navajo including the Navajo Nation government.  Jacques has worked for forty years with Navajo and other rural Native American communities and governments to plan, finance, implement, manage and evaluate projects and programs in ecosystem and watershed‐based natural resources conservation and management; community empowerment, strategic planning, and sustainable economic development; and supportive education, training and capacity‐building.  Jacques has a B.S. in Plant Biology from Northern Arizona University.

MELISSA MELERO-MOOSE

Great Basin Native Artist Project Manager

 

Melissa was born in San Francisco, CA in 1974 and spent most of her childhood living in Reno, Nevada.  She is a Northern Paiute enrolled with the Fallon Paiute-Shoshone Tribe located in Fallon, Nevada with ties to Fort Bidwell Paiute in California.  Melissa holds a BFA from the Institute of American Indian Arts, Santa Fe, NM and a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and Fine Arts from Portland State University, Portland, Oregon. 

She is currently exhibiting regionally and nationally as an individual artist and with the GBNA art collective.  Her influences are imagery found in the Great Basin landscape, petroglyphs, beadwork, and basketry from the Native tribes of Nevada and California.

APRIL LEMLY, MFA
(Cherokee Descendant)
Graphic Designer

 

April serves as the graphic designer for IDRS and the Acorn Project. She has worked in Indian Country for seven years providing technical assistance primarily in the areas of branding and marketing. She has been a free lance graphic designer for ten years with clients in Los Angeles, Manhattan and many cities in between. She earned a M.F.A. in graphic design from The Academy of Art University in San Francisco. 

 

April has a passion for small business and what it takes to launch a brand or project with success. She has worked in this realm additionally with many non-profit organizations in Portland, Oregon such as the Oregon Native American Chamber, ONABEN and Hatch Labs. She lives in Port Angeles, Washington where she runs a small organic flower farm and beer bar with her partner Sean and dog Lula. 
 

Board of Directors

ROMAN ORONA

(Apache)

Chairperson

Native Performer and Actor

 

Roman has extensive practical experience and expertise in short-and long-range environmental and natural resources conservation planning, development and implementation. He has been involved in designing and conducting a wide range of activities, including impact studies, policy reviews, and mitigation processes and providing services in fiscal management, conflict management and dispute resolution. 

 

From 2006 to 2010 he served as the Director of Environmental Protection and as the Environmental Programs Manager with the Ak-Chin Community-Environmental Programs Department in Maricopa, AZ.  Prior to that, he served as the Environmental Engineer with the Salt River Pima Maricopa Indian Community-Environmental Protection and Natural Resources Department in Scottsdale AZ and as the Deputy Director and Director of Operations of Earth Conservation Corps-Salmon Corps in Portland, Oregon. Roman earned his college degrees in Biology, Civil Engineering and Public Administration.

CARMELLA ICAY JOHNSON

(Habematolel Pomo Of Upper Lake)

Treasurer / Secretary

Development Associate,

Tiburcio Vazquez Health Center

 

Carmella served as a member of Tribal Council from 1998-2010, ten years of which she served as Tribal Chairperson.  She was the driving force in leading her community through the lengthy and complex planning, development and construction phases of developing a tribal gaming facility on reservation. As Chairperson, she represented her Tribe in negotiating MOUs with county government agencies, developed and implemented public outreach campaigns, negotiated a state gaming compact with the California Governor and directed and coordinated the day-to-day activities of attorneys, architects, general construction contractors and environmental consultants.

From 1980 to 2002, Carmella served as the Contributions Manager for the Clorox Company Foundation in Oakland, CA. 

LISA BERNAL

(Sisseton Wahpeton Dakota)

Member-At-Large
Title VII Program Manager, Chicago Public Schools American Indian Education Department

 

Lisa serves as the Title VII Program Manager for Chicago Public Schools. As a liaison for Native American students she seeks to improve classroom experiences and encourage participation in higher education. Lisa leads trips for Native Youth in Chicago Public Schools to universities across the Midwest to experience campus life and is regularly involved in Native-focused after-school programs. Prior to working at the Chicago Public Schools, she served as a longtime legal assistant for Heller & Frisone, Ltd., a prominent law firm in Chicago. Lisa studied Paralegal Studies at Wilbur Wright College in Chicago.

THERESA CARMODY

(Seneca)

Member At Large

Land Specialist, Intertribal Territories Recovery Institute (ITRI)

 

Theresa has a combined experience of twenty-five years in American Indian legislation, policy analysis, economic development, and land recovery issues.  She has worked for the National Congress of American Indians, the Native American Rights Fund and First Nations Development Institute. Theresa co-founded the Indian Land Working Group (ILWG) and served as the organization’s Secretary/Treasurer until 2001, and Executive Director until January 2010.  At that time she founded the Intertribal Territories Recovery Institute focusing on the restoration of federal lands located within and bordering tribal homelands. As a land specialist with the ITRI, her work includes land restoration training on the Federal Land Policy & Management Act, and development of protective and sustainable land use and water ordinances. She works with tribal governments to access programs and technical assistance for alternative energy development on tribal lands. Theresa authored, “Trust: A Matter Of Control” and “The FNDI Indian Land Consolidation Manual” covering issues such as  American Indian trust fund management, land restoration and use, and control of ancestral homelands.