Pictured here, the two main participants of the May 23rd meeting were Silvia Burley, Chairperson of the California Valley Miwok Tribe and Merv L. George, Jr., the Regional Tribal Relations Program Manager for the USDA Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Region.

The California Valley Miwok Tribe (located at 10601 N. Escondido PL, Stockton, CA, as listed in the Bureau of Indian Affairs’ BIA/DOI Spring 2011 Tribal Leaders Directory), a federally recognized tribe eligible to receive and distribute services from the federal government – on Monday, May 23rd, 2011, tribal representatives traveled to the United States Department of Agriculture Forest Service Pacific Southwest Regional offices in Vallejo, CA, to meet with Mr. Merv L. George, Jr., the USDA Forest Service Regional Tribal Relations Program Manager.

Mr. George was recently instrumental in coordinating a government-to-government consultation between the U.S. Forest Service and the Tribe that will take place on June 2nd at the tribal offices located at 10601 Escondido PL. Mr. George fulfills a much needed position, improving the communication and understanding between the U.S. Forest Service and the federally recognized tribes, helping to strengthen the existing relationships to be able to work together more cohesively now and in the future.

The Tribe has already benefited from the work that Mr. George does and so took this opportunity for a meet and greet at his office in Vallejo, CA. Mr. George is a Native American, a former tribal chairman and a member of the Hoopa tribe. Being part of the Native American community and being active in it throughout his life gives Mr. George the valuable insight needed in his current position in which the Tribe feels that they have already benefited from.

During the meeting in Mr. George’s office, much was discussed and Mr. George was able to address all of the Tribe’s concerns. Mr. George thoroughly educated the Tribe on the relationship and responsibilities of the U.S. Forest Service with tribes and of the duties of his office. The meeting went well and with his great communication skills and vast knowledge, the Tribe feels that Mr. George is an asset to USDA Forest Service and will greatly contribute to future interactions between the U.S. Forest Service and the Native American tribes. At this time, we would like to thank Mr. George for the meeting which he afforded the Tribe within his busy schedule.