IITC Announces new Board President

Jose Francisco “Pancho” Cali Tzay and Ron Lameman, outgoing and incoming IITC Board Presidents



June 17, 2020, Tucson, Arizona: The International Indian Treaty Council welcomes its incoming IITC Board President, Ronald Lameman, who was seated by the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors with a resolution adopted by consensus on June 13, 2020. Ron is a member of the Beaver Lake Cree Nation in Alberta, Canada, and has served as an IITC Board Officer since 1998. He is the Bi-lateral Coordinator who focuses on Treaty rights for the Confederacy of Treaty 6 First Nations and represents the Nations of Treaties 1-11 on IITC’s Board of Directors. He has participated in work for the rights of Indigenous Peoples at the United Nations since 1980.

Ron Lameman replaces Francisco Cali Tzay, who had served as IITC’s Board President since 2000. Mr. Cali Tzay stepped down at this time so that he could concentrate his time and efforts on his position as the UN Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which began on May 1, 2020. He will remain a Board alternate for the Centro de Proyectos para el Desarrollo Integral Indígena (CEPRODI, Guatemala) and will continue to be a member of IITC’s Executive Committee in an advisory role.

Mr. Cali highlighted his gratitude to IITC’s Executive Committee, Board of Directors and staff for their support and understanding as he focuses on his extensive work as the Special Rapporteur. “I recall that IITC presented the first resolution to the Commission on Human Rights to establish this mandate in 2000 when I was Geneva, so it felt like it’s coming full circle now that I am being selected to carry out this mandate 20 year later. I will continue to work with IITC through CEPRODI and will rely on IITC and all other Indigenous Peoples’ organizations to provide me with information and guidance as I carry out this work.

Mr. Lameman also expressed his appreciation to Francisco Cali, the Board of Directors and IITC as a whole for nominating him to serve in this capacity. “Pancho leaves some very big shoes to fill and I will continue to rely on his guidance and advice. I remember the instructions of my elders when I first started doing this work as a young person. They said when your people call on you to serve, to help this work to go forward, you should not refuse. You should say yes humbly and do your best to carry it out in a good way. We have a large family of Indigenous Peoples and Nations with many very wise and committed leaders, and I will rely on their support and guidance as I take on this very big responsibility”.

The Executive Committee resolution also named Tai Pelli, who represents the United Confederation of Taíno People, Caribbean Region, on the IITC Board of Directors as Board Secretary/Treasurer, the position formerly held by Ron Lameman. Tai is the first Caribbean Indigenous representative to become an IITC Board Officer and Executive Committee member.

These changes in IITC’s Board officer positions became official on June 13th but will need to be formally confirmed by the full IITC Board of Directors when they meet later this year, in accordance with IITC’s internal policies and procedures.


Ron Lameman can be reached via email at [email protected]. Francisco Cali Tzay can be contacted at [email protected].

For additional information contact IITC Executive Director Andrea Carmen, at [email protected].

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