Gabe Galanda Teaches Tribal Airspace Sovereignty & Aviation Jurisdiction

On November 13, Gabe Galanda delivered a lecture to Boeing's legal department titled, "American Indian Law for the Boeing Lawyer."  In that presentation he discusses the intersection of tribal sovereignty and regulatory authority, and federal aviation law. Gabe asks, "Can Tribes de facto regulate over-reservation airspace?," and answers:

Tribes might very well be able enforce the FAA’s Tribal Consultation Policy against private actors—e.g. Unmanned Aircraft System (“UAS”) operators—via the FAA.

Imagine a drone flying over and surveilling an on-reservation sacred site.  Or a an unsavory banner being flown from behind a plane over tribal homelands.  In the face of such incursions, tribal governments will do something about it as a matter of sovereignty.


Gabriel “Gabe” Galanda is the Managing Partner at Galanda Broadman. He is a citizen of the Round Valley Indian Tribes. Gabe can be reached at 206.300.7801 or