Ivan Makil

With expertise in government affairs, business and economic development, Ivan Makil founded Generation Seven Strategic Partners to provide a conduit between tribal governments and non-tribal entities. To further strengthen tribal economies, Makil also created a Native-owned venture capital fund.

Makil hosts Native Visions; a PBS Eight television show highlighting contributions by Native populations throughout the world. Partnering with Arizona State University, he created and coordinates a national training program for newly elected American Indian officials. Under the direction of ASU’s Office of Public Affairs, the program includes training on government structure, ethics, legislation, budgeting and management of national resources - topics and issues that tribal leaders across the nation confront.

Makil was elected to three consecutive terms as President of the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community (SPRMIC). Under his leadership, the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community became a nationally recognized model for successful business enterprises, land use planning and overall economic development that is creative, diversified, and culturally sensitive. As President he introduced major new enterprises such as Saddleback Communications, Casino Arizona, Talking Stick Golf Course and Chaparral Business Park. He also expanded existing enterprises, such as Salt River Materials Group.

During the years of service to his Community, Makil helped negotiate the Loop 101, Outer Loop Freeway, instituted youth leadership programs, assisted in bringing over 1,000 acres of land into SRPIMC ownership and established the first public relations office of its kind for any tribe in the United States for the SRPMIC. He also introduced the concept of an “investment committee” to create and manage an investment portfolio for the Tribe. Its success enabled the SRPMIC to move aggressively toward comprehensive asset management and self-determination.

On a state level, Makil coordinated and oversaw the first ballot initiative on gaming ever attempted in Arizona and the U.S. This statewide initiative, which won by a 2:1 margin, allowed five tribes without gaming compacts to acquire compacts. In the year 2000, Makil chaired the statewide ballot initiative, Proposition 202 that enabled Indian gaming to continue in Arizona.

Active nationally, Makil was one of ten tribal leaders asked to present at the first White House meeting of Indian tribes with the President of the United States and all members of his cabinet. That meeting, which took place in 1994, was the first time since the 1800s that tribes were invited to the White House. In August, 1998, he played a significant role in developing and presenting the first “White House Conference on Building Economic Self –Determination in Indian Communities”. He was also instrumental in creating, planning, and developing “The National Summit on Emerging Tribal Economies” which was held in Phoenix, AZ in September of 2002.

Makil served on the T-GEN (Transitional Genomics) Board and the Governor’s Citizens Fiscal Review Commission. He is a Board Member of the Grand Canyon Trust and was invited to participate in the inaugural South African Leadership Safari sponsored by the Foundation for Global Leadership. He has been honored by the National Congress of American Indians Youth Leadership Programs, the Inter-Tribal Council of Arizona, the National Indian Gaming Association and the East Valley Partnership. Ivan Makil was named “Man of the Year” by Valley Leadership, was selected as “One of the 100 Most Influential in Arizona” by The Business Journal and is the 2007 recipient of the “Wendell Chino Humanitarian Award.” presented by the National Indian Gaming Association.

A former member of the International Founder’s Council for the Smithsonian Museum of the American Indian, Makil is a sought after speaker and advisor on both Indian and non-Indian issues, he is also a professional musician who plays trumpet and guitar.