Lillian Sparks, Commissioner, Administration for Native Americans
Lillian Sparks, a Lakota woman of the Rosebud and Oglala Sioux Tribes, is the Commissioner of the Administration of Native Americans. Miss Sparks was confirmed by the United States Senate as the Commissioner on March 3, 2010, and was sworn in on March 5, 2010. She has devoted her career to supporting the educational pursuits of Native American students, protecting the rights of indigenous people, and empowering tribal communities.
Prior to her appointment, Miss Sparks served as the Executive Director of the National Indian Education Association (NIEA) where she worked extensively on k-12 and early childhood education policy and appropriations impacting American Indian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian students.
Before joining NIEA, Miss Sparks served as a staff attorney with the National Congress of American Indians where she worked on international indigenous rights, sacred sites and religious protection, and issues related to youth and healthcare.
Miss Sparks also previously worked in the legal department at the National Indian Gaming Commission at the Department of the Interior.
Named one of seven young Native American Leaders by USA Today Magazine, Miss Sparks received her B.A. in Political Science from Morgan State University, located in her hometown of Baltimore, MD, and her Juris Doctorate from Georgetown University Law Center in Washington, DC. Miss Sparks is admitted to practice in Maryland.