Get to Know Your Legislative Staff


With three new members of the Legislative Branch, new sup- port staff members have also come to work in the legislative office. Last month we introduced you to Wendy Merrill, Darcie Big Bear, Val Harrington, and Brianna Boyd. This month and next month we will introduce the remaining Legislative staff.

Christine J. Jordan

Job title: Chief Legislative Counsel for the Legislative Branch.

Job responsibilities: I provide legal analysis of issues that come before Band Assembly, review contracts, and I draft resolutions, legal memoranda, and statutory amendments. I collaborate with the employees from the other branches of government in order to procure necessary information for Band Assembly and to ensure that any statutory amendments are clear, concise, and practical.

Education and background: I received my J.D. and Indian Law Certificate from the University Of New Mexico School Of Law. I graduated summa cum laude from the University of New Mexico and received my B.A. in Criminology with a minor in Psychology. I also have an Associate’s Degree in Psychology from Georgia Perimeter College. While I was receiving my un- dergraduate degrees, I worked full-time as a waiter and bartender. I have worked in restaurants since I was 14 years old. I also volunteered with different organizations and shelters to help youth in crisis. While finishing my final year of my B.A., I interned with the Capital Crimes unit for the Law Office of the Public Defender in New Mexico, where I worked on cases involving child abuse resulting in death and children charged as adults for homicide.

While in law school, I was fortunate to work for different Indian law agencies such as the Office of Tribal Justice for the Department of Justice and in the Indian Country Crimes Section of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of New Mexico. I also represented tribal clients in criminal and civil cases through the Southwest Indian Law Clinic.

Volunteer service: District I Powwow Committee; Minnesota American Bar Association, CLE Committee; Pre-Law Summer Institute for American Indians and Alaska Natives, Judicial Clerkship Committee Consultant; Tribal In-House Counsel Association.

Previous job responsibilities and achievements: Prior to working for the Legislative Branch, I was a Deputy Solicitor General for the Office of the Solicitor General. My caseload primarily consisted of child protection cases. I also reviewed contracts. Before coming to Mille Lacs, I was a judicial law clerk for the Honorable Michael E. Vigil. I drafted opinions on a variety of civil, criminal, and administrative appeals.

Certifications and industry honors: I am licensed to practice law in New Mexico, Minnesota, and for the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe.

Family: My mother lives in New Mexico, and I have one daughter who is six years old.

Brief biographical statement: I was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and I am Blackfeet and Isleta Pueblo. My great- est accomplishment is becoming a mother. When I have free time, I love trying new restaurants, watching movies, and spending time with friends and family.

Billie Jo Boyd

Name/nickname: Bea, Billie, (Or Bobby... don’t worry everyone does calls me that, it's not just you).

Job title: District I Office Manager.

Job responsibilities: Ensuring the smooth operation of the office and administrative functions by managing, evaluating, planning, and implementing the activities of the District I Office, Community Center, AMVETS, Women's Auxiliary, and Powwow Committee.

Education and background: I have attended Haskell Indian Nations University and Central Lakes College and am working on my AA in business administration. I've worked as an early education teacher. I owned my own business called "The Candy Cupboard." I was hired in 2012 to be the administrative assistant to District I Representative Sandra Blake in the Legislative office and was promoted to office manager this year.

Volunteer service: Gaming Regulatory Authority co-chair 2014–2018; MAPP member 2018; Powwow Committee co- chair 2018; member since 2016.

Certifications and industry honors: Fully qualified Gaming Regulator/Commissioner with the National Indian Gaming Commission.

Family: I’m in a committed relationship, have five children, and take care of my Elderly mother. We also have a cat, a turtle, and two dogs.

Brief biographical statement: I have a long history of volunteer work within the community and have advocated for Early Education/Head Start in 2016 at the Capitol. I am working this year with the MAPP (Mille Lacs Area Partners for Prevention) coalition and am a proud member of the Sober Squad.

Personal fun facts: I am ambidextrous; I can draw and write with both hands. I also am an avid gamer, cosplayer, and like to play MMORPGs.

Semira Kimpson

Name/nickname: My Ojibwe name is Mamiziiwekamigokwe (All Over the Earth Woman).

Job title: Legislative Coordinator.

Job responsibilities: Minor hardship withdrawals and other job duties as assigned.

Education and background:

I have some college experience — I attended Central Lakes College and Fond du Lac. I worked at Grand Casino Mille Lacs for almost seven years as a blackjack dealer, poker dealer, and dual rate. I have been working for the Mille Lacs Band for the past eight years. I also started working for Curt Kalk in 2010 as the Legislative receptionist and gradually started working as the administrative assistant. I worked for Sandra Blake for three years as the community center administrative assistant.

Volunteer service: I am a member of the Nay Ah Shing School Board and MAPP. MAPP was established in 2011 with the pri- mary focus of sharing resources, ideas, and information to bring about community awareness of underage alcohol and drug use issues and promote prevention. We strive to include community representatives in the following categories: youth, parents, busi- ness, community, media, school, youth-serving organizations, law enforcement, justice/corrections, spiritual organizations, civic and volunteer groups, health care, state and local government, and organizations focused on substance abuse.
Alma mater: Graduated from Nay Ah Shing in 2003.

Family: My father is Lawrence Kimpson and my mother is Doreen Sam. My grandparents are Henry Sam Sr. and Evelyn Murphy. My fiancé is Michael Karlstad Jr. and we have five kids together: Fabian Sam, 9, Stefan Kimpson, 8, Lilianna (Migiziikwe) Kimpson, 5, Michael Karlstad III, 3, and Amaya Karlstad, 2.

Brief biographical statement: I was born in Minneapolis and spent most of my childhood moving back and forth between Minneapolis and Vineland until I was in seventh grade, and we finally stayed in the Mille Lacs area.

Personal fun facts: I like to stay involved with the community by attending various activities such as going to Mille Lacs County Board meetings, rallies, getting out the vote, public hearings, and parent committees for Wewinabi and Nay Ah Shing.