United States Attorney Brendan V. Johnson has completed his term as Chairman of the Department of Justice’s Native American Issues Subcommittee (NAIS), but will continue to advise the Attorney General in his role as a member of the Attorney General’s Advisory Committee of U.S. Attorneys (AGAC). Johnson has served as chairman of the NAIS since 2009, shortly after his confirmation as U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota.
Attorney General Holder thanked U.S. Attorney Johnson for serving as chair of the NAIS for the past three years, 2009-2012. “Brendan Johnson’s dedication and commitment to improving public safety in Indian Country will continue to positively impact tribal communities for years to come. His leadership has brought the U.S. Attorney community together to address a myriad of important issues in Indian Country, and his guidance has been an invaluable asset to this department. I look forward to my ongoing work with U.S. Attorney Johnson as a member of the AGAC.”
As NAIS chair, Johnson was instrumental in bringing South Dakota Indian country issues to the forefront. In July 2011, Attorney General Holder, Associate Attorney General Thomas J. Perrelli, and approximately 30 United States Attorneys from across the country visited South Dakota to meet with tribal leaders in Rapid City and Pine Ridge. The Department of Justice has worked closely with tribal communities to empower tribal courts, increase law enforcement cooperation, and improve public safety in Indian Country. In South Dakota, this new spirit of cooperation has produced a significant
increase in prosecutions as well as the development of new programs designed to empower tribal court systems.
Johnson’s service will continue on the AGAC. The AGAC is a select committee of United States Attorneys that was created in 1973 to serve as the voice of the U.S. Attorneys and to advise the Attorney General on policy, management, and operational issues impacting the offices of the U.S. Attorneys.
Attorney General Holder also announced the appointment of U.S. Attorney for the District of North Dakota Timothy Q. Purdon to replace Johnson as chair of NAIS, and U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Oklahoma Sanford C. Coats to serve as vice chair.
“I’m honored that I had the opportunity to serve as NAIS chair for the past three years, and sincerely appreciate Attorney General Holder’s confidence in me,” said Johnson. “I’m proud of our accomplishments, and am confident these efforts will continue under the able guidance of U.S. Attorney Purdon.”