Chairman Baker selects Olguin to lead Permanent Fund

James M. Olguin Executive Officer
Jeremy Wade Shockley | SUDRUM

Southern Ute Tribal Chairman Melvin J. Baker has appointed James M. “Mike” Olguin as the Executive Officer over the Southern Ute Permanent Fund.

“The role and responsibility of Executive Officer is vast and requires an individual with exceptional communication, time management, conflict resolution, problem solving skills while also working as a liaison between the tribal membership, tribal departments, and the tribal leadership,” stated Chairman Baker. “As we begin the new year under a new Chairman and Vice Chairman, I also wanted to begin with sharing my appointment of a new Executive Officer. It is important to me to take the necessary time to select the right individual for this role.”

The prominent position provides administrative support and guidance to Tribal Departments in accordance with Tribal Policies and Procedures and legal requirements as delegated by the Tribal Chairman; ensuring that the tribal membership receive quality services in an equitable manner and within established program guidelines and approved budgetary limitations. The office must also work to evaluate the effectiveness and efficiency of the Department plans and programs to ensure that they are achieving the purpose for which they were intended.

Olguin enters the office with a large amount of experience. He served on Tribal Council for a total of nine years, including three years as Vice Chairman and two years as Treasurer, and has served twice as Executive Officer under Chairman Leonard C. Burch and Chairman Clement J. Frost.

“I take this appointment with great honor and humbleness with a clear drive and motivation to serve the people of our tribe in administering and managing the affairs of the Permanent Fund to the level of expectations of the Chairman, and Tribal Council, utilizing the work of the professional staff and their charge in carrying out the duties that serve the membership,” stated Olguin. “It is my intent to ensure we have an administration that is progressive, yet accountable in its day-to-day functions and tasks. I look forward to the challenges but know there are a lot of hard-working teams that will assist me in carrying out my duties.” 

Olguin has also worked as the Vice President of Regulatory Management for Sky Ute Sand and Gravel, Director of Natural Resources, and as Supervisor for the Wildlife Conservation Office. Olguin also brings a plethora of experience from serving on the following tribal committees: Growth Fund Management Committee, Red Cedar Gathering Company Management Committee, Permanent Fund Budget Committee, Southern Ute Indian Tribe Audit Committee, Growth Fund Tribal Member Employment Advisory Committee, and Permanent Fund Credit Committee among others.

“I believe Mr. Olguin will work alongside Tribal Council and my office in the best interests of the tribal membership and the tribal organization. His experience makes him an ideal candidate for the role as Executive Officer and provides him with both the knowledge and ability to implement my vision of progress,” expressed Chairman Baker. “I would also like to thank Mrs. Barbara Scott-Rarick and her commitment to a smooth transition as well as an extension of her appointment while I pursued a successor.”

Chairman Baker will appoint a second Executive Officer in the coming weeks.

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