Jaclyn R. Johnson

Jackie johnson

Practice Areas

Jackie Johnson has over a decade of experience representing tribes and tribal entities in transactional matters.  Jackie is a facilitator, collaborative, highly organized, and a problem solver.  Jackie uses these strengths, along with her perceptiveness and resourcefulness, to assist her clients in an array of matters.

Jackie's desire to serve Indian Country started at an early age.  She is a first descendant of the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes and was raised on the Flathead Reservation, located in northwest Montana. While Jackie was aware of the issues that faced her community growing up, it was her studies at Dartmouth College that developed her interest in federal Indian and tribal law and her understanding of how the law could be used to serve tribal communities. After receiving a degree in Native American Studies modified with Environmental Studies, Jackie attended and received her law degree at the University of Michigan.

Prior to joining Rothstein Donatelli in 2013, Jackie's practice focused mainly on real estate transactions.  Jackie has the skills and experience to handle the nitty-gritty details of a real estate transaction, such as reviewing surveys, title work, legal descriptions, encumbrances and environmental and cultural reports, while also drafting and negotiating the agreements and collaborating with key players.  Jackie also has experience in other transactional matters that are not real estate related.  Her work includes negotiating and drafting leases, purchase and sale agreements (real estate and non-real estate assets), rights-of-way, loan agreements, construction contracts, lease to own agreements, consultant agreements, memoranda of understanding, and letter agreements.

In addition, Jackie has assisted clients in drafting various policies and procedures, codes, ordinances and manuals.  She enjoys projects such as these where she is working as a team with the client to listen, collaborate and produce documentation that fits a client's specific needs.

When she is not working with her clients, Jackie is busy raising her two young children.  She enjoys being with her kids and husband, experiencing new places and cultures, and being outdoors. 

Notable Experience

  • Assisted tribal client with the acquisition of 161 acres of ancestral lands to be used for tribal cultural purposes and tourism.  Reviewed title work, surveys, inspections and environmental reports, and highlighted for the client important issues to consider during the due diligence phase of the purchase.  Later, Jackie put together the tribe's non-gaming fee-to-trust application and coordinated with the Bureau of Indian Affairs regarding same.  The fee-to-trust project included Jackie advising on NEPA compliance and assisting the tribal client in obtaining a categorical exclusion and biological and cultural evaluations.
  • Drafted and negotiated a design-to-build contract for the design and construction of office and farm maintenance buildings.  During the design and construction phases of the project, Jackie provided the tribal farming authority with guidance and assisted in communications with the contractor.
  • Negotiated and drafted tribal-state gaming compact regulatory provisions.  Negotiations and drafting were conducted as part of a “tribal team” composed of over a dozen tribes. Served as facilitator for all tribal meetings.
  • Conducted due diligence review for several large scale rights-of-way projects and drafted the rights-of-way agreements. Due diligence included review of all surveys, legal descriptions and identifying encroachment and encumbrance issues.  Assisted with NEPA compliance and coordinated with the Bureau of Indian Affairs on these projects. Worked with a team to communicate effectively with hundreds of allottees regarding the rights-of-way in order to finalize the agreements. 
  • Drafted manuals and ancillary documentation for the following tribal programs (i) community wellness program that provides educational support and vocational skills training to clients through a GED Program and work team, (ii) employee loan repayment program, and (iii) summer camp program.
  • Revised personnel policies and procedures.
  • Drafted various environmental ordinances, which included collaboration with various tribal stakeholders.

Education

  • University of Michigan Law School, JD (2008)
  • Dartmouth College, BA in Native American Studies and Environmental Studies (2005)

Honors

  • Top Pro Bono Attorneys (2011) - Arizona Foundation for Legal Services & Education

Bar Admissions

  • Arizona State Bar, 2009
  • Navajo Nation Bar, 2009

Memberships/Affiliations

  • Native American Bar Association of Arizona
  • State Bar of Arizona, Indian Law Section and Real Estate Section

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