Department of the Interior

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Office of the Assistant Secretary - Indian Affairs
CONTACT: Nedra Darling
BIA Special Agent Selanhongva McDonald
Graduates from FBI National Academy

Note to Editors: A photograph of Special Agent McDonald (at right) with BIA Director Ragsdale may be found at

WASHINGTON - Bureau of Indian Affairs Director W. Patrick Ragsdale today announced that BIA Special Agent Selanhongva McDonald, an enrolled member of the Hopi Tribe of Arizona and a 13-year veteran of BIA law enforcement, successfully completed his training at the Federal Bureau of Investigation National Academy (FBINA) in Quantico, Va., last month, graduating with his class on March 18. He is now one of a select group of BIA law enforcement officers who are FBINA graduates.

"I congratulate Special Agent Selanhongva McDonald and all BIA law enforcement personnel who have graduated from the FBI National Academy," said Ragsdale. "Through their accomplishment, these dedicated professionals have demonstrated their commitment to their fellow officers and to the citizens whom they have sworn to protect."

McDonald spent 10 weeks at the FBI Academy as one of 250 trainees selected from domestic and international law enforcement agencies comprising the 220th Session, as the class is called. He underwent intensive classroom and physical training leading up to a 6.2 mile run that all graduates must complete.

"I want to express my appreciation to BIA Law Enforcement for providing me the opportunity to attend the FBI National Academy," McDonald said. "The FBINA training program is the best and most demanding I have attended during my career. It has made me a better officer."

Special Agent McDonald, an instructor at the United States Indian Police Academy in Artesia, N.M., began his law enforcement career in 1992 as a BIA police officer on the Hopi Indian Reservation in northeastern Arizona. In 1997, he completed the Basic Criminal Investigator Training Program in Glynco, Ga., and in 1998 joined the BIA's Western Nevada Agency in Carson City, Nev., as a special agent. While there he was assigned to the FBI's Safe Trails Task Force investigating violent crimes in Indian Country. From then until 2001, he was the Lead Special Agent for the Western Nevada Agency, as well as the agency's chief of police. He also served as police chief for the Fallon Indian Reservation of the Fallon Paiute Shoshone Tribe in Nevada. In 2001, he served for six months as a Federal Air Marshall.

In September 2002, Special Agent McDonald became an instructor at the Indian Police Academy where he teaches a wide range of subjects including investigating child and elder abuse cases, defensive tactics for law enforcement personnel, and crime scene investigation and photography.

Immediately following his graduation from the FBINA, McDonald was assigned to the joint FBI-BIA team investigating the school shooting on the Red Lake Reservation in Minnesota. He is currently on temporary assignment to the BIA Office of Law Enforcement Services headquarters in Washington, D.C.

Special Agent McDonald was born in Tucson, Ariz., and graduated from Pala Verde High School. He went on to Northern Arizona University where he received a Bachelors of Science degree in Criminal Justice in 1990.



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