Commissioner, Regina Cuellar
Regina Cuellar (she/her) proudly serves as the Chairwoman of her Tribe, the Shingle Springs Band of Miwok Indians, where she has been involved in Tribal leadership for over 10 years.
Prior to her work in Tribal government, she worked in the Tribe’s Health & Wellness Center, bringing an education in pharmacy tech to provide a much needed and valued service to her community. Raised of Native, Hispanic, and Filipino descent, her lived experience as a mixed individual in poverty exposed her firsthand to the generational trauma, social inequity, and discrimination that exists in disadvantaged communities not unlike her own. Determined to break down these barriers, her work took her from healthcare to education, where her continued advocacy for member higher education eventually led her to tribal leadership. Regina also serves as Regent Secretary for the California Tribal College working to increase accessibility to educational resources to Tribal peoples and recognizing their historical underrepresentation in institutions across the State.
Now fully dedicated to preserving and protecting her Tribe’s history, culture, and traditions, Regina is an advocate for self-sufficiency and embodies a strong work ethic as a leader. She believes in exercising powers of self-government and sovereign immunity to provide and promote social, health, economic and educational opportunities and services that contribute to the well-being of her own and surrounding Tribal communities. During her tenure as Chairwoman, the Tribe has doubled its land base to pave the way for much-needed housing and will continue to invest in the revitalization of its people. However, her passion, advocacy, and impact extend far beyond just her Tribe in Shingle Springs.
On the state level, Chairwoman Cuellar stands for rights of all Native and Indigenous peoples, recently sponsoring two critically important pieces of legislation. The first bill, AB 1314, establishes the Feather Alert, a statewide emergency advisory system for Missing and Murdered Indigenous People who account for a disproportionate share of these cases. A second bill, AB 338, establishes a monument that will be erected at the Capitol to represent and honor the enduring legacy of California’s Native Peoples, replacing that of Junipero Serra who played an important role in the California Mission system and subsequent genocide against California Natives.
Recently, Regina was highlighted as one of 2023’s Women in Leadership and Politics for her role within her Tribe and will continue to stand as an advocate for all Native people and ensure they have a voice whenever possible.