A rugged, whitewater river flowing northward through deep canyons, the New River is among the oldest rivers on the continent. New River Gorge National River in West Virginia encompasses over 70,000 acres of land along the New River, is rich in cultural and natural history, and offers an abundance of scenic and recreational opportunities.
Big Southern Butte is one of two domes rising from a sea of basalt near the center of the eastern Snake River Plain in Idaho. The butte is one of the largest volcanic domes in the world, but at 300,000 years old it is also one of the youngest. Hikers who trek to the 7,550-foot high summit are rewarded with spectacular panoramic views. Photo by Devin Englestead, BLM Upper Snake Wildlife Biologist.
First light at Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge in New Mexico. Established in November 22, 1939, the refuge has provided a critical stopover and wintering spot for thousands of sandhill cranes, geese and other waterfowl for 75 years. Bosque del Apache's sandhill crane population has multiplied from 18 birds in the 1840s to more than 20,000 birds today. Photo by Kim Hang Dessoliers (www.sharetheexperience.org).
Interior Indian Affairs Official Speaks on Indigenous Rights at United Nations
Office of the Secretary
NEW YORK, NY — Donald “Del” Laverdure, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Indian Affairs, today addressed the United Nations on U.S. support for the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. He emphasized that President Obama holds his Administration to a high standard of action on Native American issues.
Laverdure's remarks at the Tenth Session of the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues followed a statement at Monday's opening session by Kimberly Teehee, Senior Policy Advisor for Native American Affairs in the Domestic Policy Council at the White House. Laverdure's appearance represented the first time that an Interior official has spoken at this forum.
Teehee, a member of the Cherokee Nation, and Laverdure, a member of the Crow Nation, both emphasized President Obama's statement when he announced U.S. support for the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples on December 16, 2010 at the second White House Tribal Nations Conference. “What matters far more than words -- what matters far more than any resolution or declaration – are actions to match those words,” the President stressed in the December announcement.
Laverdure reaffirmed that the United States is committed to actions that provide meaningful improvement to the lives of Native Americans. He wore his family headdress to commemorate President Obama's adoption by the Crow Nation.