As longtime General Counsel for the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians (GTB), John Petoskey participates in all federal, state and tribal litigation and administrative hearings where the Tribe was a plaintiff or defendant. A citizen of GTB, he also wrote the majority of GTB’s statutes published as the Grand Traverse Band Code. He participated in the original Michigan Indian gaming compact negotiations and litigation through the 1980s and 1990s and the tax negotiations of 2000-2004. Petoskey also participated in the post-trial phase of U.S. v. Michigan (dealing with Indian treaty fishing rights), and was integrally involved with Grand Traverse Band v. the US Atty. 369 F.3d 960 (6th Cir. 2004), which dealt with the issue of the scope of 25 U.S.C. 2719 and the restored lands exception for Indian gaming. He also worked on several cases on Indian Country jurisdiction and Indian First Amendment rights (1979-1985).
John currently serves as partner with Fredericks Peebles and Morgan LLP, and in October 2013 he became the fifth individual to serve as Indigenous Leadership Fellow with the Native Nations Institute for Leadership, Management, and Policy at The University of Arizona.