Judge Gregory H. Bigler is set to deliver the Watkins Lecture on Wednesday, Sept. 21. The lecture will begin at noon at the East Central University Chickasaw Conference and Business Center.
Bigler is an appellate court judge with the Mashantucket (Western) Pequot Tribal Nation in southern Connecticut. He is a private practitioner of Indian Law, solely representing Native American tribes.
He is Euchee and enrolled with the Muscogee Creek Nation. His linguistic interests range from his native Euchee language and efforts to raise awareness of native language preservation, to studies of Mandarin Chinese. Bigler was instrumental in founding the Oklahoma Native Language Association of which he is a past chair. He also organized and co-chaired the Oklahoma Native Language Use Conference. Bigler is an expert on the UN Treaty on the Rights of Indigenous People.
Bigler serves as a tribal court judge for the Prairie Band Potawatomi, and sits on the Supreme Court for the Kansas Kickapoo Tribe. He is a tribal prosecutor for the Citizen Potawatomi Nation, where he previously served as district court judge.
Prior appointments include attorney general for the Kickapoo Tribe of Oklahoma, attorney general for the Sac and Fox Nation, and past chair of Indian Law section of the Oklahoma Bar Association.
The judge is a member of the Oklahoma Bar Association, and admitted to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, U.S. District Courts for the Northern, Western, and Eastern District Courts of Oklahoma and numerous tribal courts.
The Watkins Lecture was created by Lou Watkins, chair of ECU’s Political Science Department from 1980 to 1991, and wife of former U.S. Representative Wes Watkins. The purpose of the lectureship is to bring recognized authorities to ECU to address subjects of public interest at the local, state or national level.