Meeting Economic Development Challenge in Indian Country


Native American communities have taken great strides in developing their economies and raising the quality of life on tribal lands. However, as President Obama noted during his historic visit to Indian country in June, there are still wide disparities between Native Americans and the overall U.S. population.

On June 25, 2014, William “Mike” Lettig, Executive Vice President and National Executive of KeyBank’s Native American Financial Services segment, had the privilege to testify at a U.S. Senate Committee on Indian Affairs Hearing on the role that investment plays in encouraging economic development in Indian country. KeyBank has helped raise more than $3 billion in capital for Indian country in the past five years and is on track to assist in raising more than copy billion in 2014 alone, making Key a formidable expert on Indian country investment matters...

Resource Type

Lettig, Mike. "Meeting Economic Development Challenge in Indian Country." Indian Country Today Media Network. November 16, 2014. Article. (, accessed July 14, 2023)

Related Resources

Thumbnail or cover image
Ch. 7: Tribal Nations as Key Players in Regional Rural Economies

The seventh chapter in Investing in Rural Prosperity, "Native America x Rural America: Tribal Nations as Key Players in Regional Rural Economies", outlines the diversity of Native nations, including with respect to governmental structure and economic opportunity. It also explores the history and…

Tribal Economic Development: Nuts & Bolts

Tribal economic development is a product of the need for Indian tribes to generate revenue in order to pay for the provision of governmental services. Unlike the federal government or states, Indian tribes – in general – have no viable tax base from which to generate revenues sufficient to…

The Economics of First Nations Governance Investment Capital, Money and Wealth Accumulation

There has been much said and written about the underdevelopment of Indian reserves in Canada, the lack of wealth in First Nations’ communities and the concomitant poverty of most First Nations’ people. While Canada sits at seven on the United Nations Human Development Scale this…