Janie Simms Hipp, J.D., LL.M.
Before serving as CEO of the Native American Agriculture Fund, Janie Simms Hipp, a citizen of the Chickasaw Nation, was the founding director of the Indigenous Food and Agriculture Initiative at the University of Arkansas. Prior to launching the initiative, she served as national program leader for Farm Financial Management, Trade Adjustment Assistance, Risk Management Education, and the Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development programs at the United States Department of Agriculture National Institute for Food and Agriculture.
She was thereafter selected as the senior advisor for tribal relations to Secretary Tom Vilsack and director of the Office of Tribal Relations. Prior to her work in Washington, D.C., at the national level, she has enjoyed a lengthy domestic and international career spanning more than 35 years in the agriculture sector as an agriculture and food lawyer and policy expert. Her work focuses on the complex intersection of Indian law and agriculture and food law.
Ms. Hipp holds a JD from Oklahoma City University and an LL.M. in agriculture and food law from the University of Arkansas. She is the author of numerous publications, most recently joining with Wilson Pipestem, J.D., and Crystal EchoHawk to author the Feeding Ourselves report and thereafter the Regaining our Future report with Colby Duren, J.D. She serves as an advisor to the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community’s Seeds of Native Health campaign and numerous other campaigns focusing on food, agriculture, health and economic development in Indian Country.
She most recently has received the National Center for American Indian Economic Development’s 2017 Tim Wapato Public Advocate of the Year Award.