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Dating back to its formation in 1908, the Blue Lake Rancheria Tribe has been fortunate to have consistently strong and stable leadership - highly educated, community-minded, internationally diplomatic, financially responsible and socially progressive.

Chairperson Claudia Brundin
Vice-Chairperson Arla Ramsey
Secretary | Treasurer Art Ramsey
Member-At-Large Jason Ramos
Member-At-Large Dorothy McKinnon

Claudia Brundin   |    Chairperson

Claudia Brundin is the Chairperson of the Blue Lake Rancheria Tribe, providing strong, balanced leadership that has spanned three decades.  Her father, Oscar E. Brundin, also served as Chairperson in his day.  Claudia provides leadership and counsel to the Tribe, and steers the Tribe and the Tribal Council in the course of fulfilling all governmental responsibilities.  Passionate about effective, modern era Tribal leadership and operations, Claudia sits on the Tribal Government Consultation Committee and the California Rural Indian Health Board, and partners with many other outstanding organizations to achieve self-sufficiency and protect self-government in Indian Country. 

In addition to her role as Chairperson, Claudia works full-time managing Housekeeping Operations for the Blue Lake Casino and the Blue Lake Rancheria Tribal Offices, upholding the Tribe’s values of individual contribution and an uncompromising work ethic.  Prior to serving the Tribe full-time, Claudia worked at St. Joseph’s Hospital for over 30 years in housekeeping and administration.  Claudia has been a life-long resident of Humboldt County and grew up in Blue Lake.  Claudia attended Arcata High School and then Humboldt Business College.  She has spent the majority of her life on the Blue Lake Rancheria’s Tribal lands. 

Arla Ramsey   |   Vice Chairperson

Arla Ramsey currently serves the Blue Lake Rancheria Tribe as its Vice-Chairperson and Tribal Administrator. Her duties include oversight of the Business Council and the Blue Lake Rancheria Economic Development Corporation. Prior to assuming Tribal Government work full-time, Arla worked for the U.S. Forest Service for over nine years as a nature guide, fire-fighter, and heavy-equipment operator, among other responsibilities. Before entering the Forest Service, Arla spent several years reorganizing the Tribe and serving as HUD Grant Coordinator following the Tribe's federal reinstatement. And prior to this reorganization work, for eight years Arla owned and operated a children's daycare business for Tribal and Blue Lake community residents. In addition to these positions, Arla and former Chairperson Sylvia Daniels led the twenty-five year political and legal fight for successful reinstatement in 1983 of Blue Lake Rancheria as a federally-recognized Tribe.

Arla has served as project manager for the following Tribal economic development initiatives: a 55,000 Sq. Ft. Casino (with 800+ slot machines), 100-Room Hotel/Pool Complex, Fuel/Grocery/Diner Facility, 8,000 Sq. Ft. Event Center, Residential Homes, 3 Restaurants, Infrastructure/ Roads/Parking/Lighting, Wells, Gravel Extraction, Environmental Rehabilitation, ADA Compliance Upgrades, and many other construction and development projects.

Arla has lived on the Blue Lake Rancheria since 1958. She attended Blue Lake schools, Arcata High and Humboldt State University. Arla holds a variety of professional certifications, including: Pepperdine University, The Graziadio School of Business and Management: Transit/Paratransit Management Program; College of the Redwoods Center: Penal 832 / Firearms, and Tribal Court Law and Justice; The Falmouth Institute: Contracting Officer's Representative, Record Management, Tribal Self-Governance, Law for the Tribal Council, NAHASDA Training; Council Lodge Institute: Basic Indian Law; Training Services Association: Housing Construction Inspection and Cost Estimating; National Environmental Training Center for Small Communities: Assessing Wastewater Options; Bill Helmich Associates: Grants and Contracts Law and Management, Drug and Alcohol Testing, OMB Circulars: A-102, A-87, A133, Environmental Law for Tribes, Employee Rights and Labor Laws; Three Feathers Associates: Title VI Training and Technical Assistance, Management, Nutrition, Supportive Services; California Rural Indian Health Board, Inc.: Final rules for P.L. 93-638; California Specialized Training Institute: Hazardous Materials Course, First Responder Awareness; Rural Community Assistance Corp.: Creative Solutions: Moving Rural Communities into the 21st Century; Johnson Associates: Design and Development of Indirect Cost Proposals for Tribal Organizations; Pesticide Applicators Assoc.: Pesticide Applications; I.H.A. Management Systems: NAHASDA Grant Implementation (HUD); Development Consultants: Tribal Environment, Health, Safety & Natural Resources' Damages Issues; ICF Consulting, Sponsored by HUD: (Office of Native American Programs Training Institute Course) Native Economic Development Guidance and Empowerment. Arla is also a certified Tribal Judge, and experienced in mediation, arbitration, and interpretation of Tribal laws, contracts, ordinances and resolutions.

Instrumental in promoting Indian Country improvements through her involvement with regional and national Tribal committees, Arla has also worked steadily to improve the lives of children and underserved adults in the greater community. Arla has held a seat on the Humboldt County Workforce Investment Board and supports the Council on Adoptable Children. With a unique combination of practical experience, diplomacy and compassion, Arla has helped the Tribe reorganize and build steadily toward economic stability. Her good will has made possible the productive community and government-to-government relationships the Tribe enjoys today.

Art Ramsey   |   Secretary/Treasurer

Art Ramsey currently serves the Blue Lake Rancheria Tribe as Secretary/Treasurer.  His duties include ensuring compliance with all required meetings, documentation of Tribal business operations and oversight of the Tribe’s fiscal processes and operations.  Further responsibilities include:   handling all official correspondence, ensuring proper meeting minutes, election certification, accept, document and safeguard all funds under the Tribe’s control, approve all draws on Tribal funds, act as primary check signatory and ensure compliance with all applicable laws and regulations.

In addition to his role as Secretary/Treasurer, Art manages Groundskeeping Operations for the Blue Lake Casino and the Blue Lake Rancheria Tribal Offices.  Prior to serving the Tribe full-time, Art worked for Simpson Timber Company as a logger and hook tender.  Upon retirement after 30 years with Simpson, Art accepted the position as Groundskeeping Manager with the Casino.  Art has been a life-long resident of Humboldt County and grew up in Blue Lake.  He attended Blue Lake primary schools and Arcata High School.  After graduation, Art enlisted in the U.S. Navy, where he served as a submariner.  Art was honorably discharged from service in 1964.  Prior to embarking upon his 30 year timber career with Simpson, Art worked as a logger in the wilds of the islands off the Alaskan coastline.  An avid fisherman, Art has spent the majority of his life on the Blue Lake Rancheria’s Tribal lands.

Jason Ramos   |   Councilmember

Jason serves the Blue Lake Rancheria (BLR) as Tribal Councilmember and Chairman of the BLR Gaming Commission, the Tribe’s regulatory division. In addition to his roles for the Tribe, Jason upholds many volunteer commitments, including service as Chair, Humboldt State University’s Advancement Foundation Board of Directors (http://www.humboldt.edu/hsuaf/board/), among many others. Jason works to clarify and advance the regulatory environment around tribal government programs and economic enterprise, and natural resource and environmental preservation. With extensive experience in federal and tribal policy and programs, Jason works cooperatively with other tribes, federal, state, and local governments and agencies to apply continual improvements to these frameworks. His contributions have created exceptional results in strengthening tribal sovereignty, while finding solutions that work within larger community/stakeholder contexts.

Current Elected Office:
Blue Lake Rancheria Tribal Councilmember

Current Occupation(s):
Blue Lake Rancheria Tribal Regulatory Chairman Government Liaison
Sustainability/Energy/Education Matters
Blue Lake Rancheria Economic Development Board of Directors

Select Professional Roles:

  • U.S. Department of Energy, Indian Country Energy and Infrastructure Working Group
  • North Coast Tribal Chairmen’s Association, Tribal Representative
  • Humboldt State University Advancement Foundation, Chair, Board of Directors
  • Humboldt State University President’s Native American Advisory Council
  • Tribal-State of California Regulators Association, Committee Member
  • Blue Lake Volunteer Fire Department Long Term Planning, Committee Member
  • Blue Lake Education Foundation, Board Member
  • Blue Lake Teens 4 Change, Founder and Board Member
  • City of Blue Lake Public Safety Commission, Secretary

Select Achievements and Recognition:

  • Appointee, National Indian Gaming Commission Technical Advisory Committee
  • Finalist, DistribuTECH “Renewable Energy Project of the Year” 2018 (BLR)
  • FEMA “John D. Solomon Whole Community Preparedness Award” 2017 (BLR)
  • U.S. Marine Corps Designation as “Double Platinum Sponsor” Toys for Tots 2017 (BLR)
  • First Runner Up, Renewable Energy World/Power Engineering “Renewable Energy Project of 2017” (BLR)
  • Finalist, S&P Global Platts Energy Award “Commercial Application of the Year” 2017 (BLR)
  • Hospitality & Tourism Business of the Year, Arcata Chamber of Commerce 2017 (BLR)
  • White House and U.S. Dept. of Energy “Climate Action Champion” Award (BLR) 2015-2016
  • Pacific Gas and Electric “Integration Award” (BLR) 2014
  • Humboldt State University Kinesiology Endowment (for biomechanics/human performance laboratories)


  • M.S. Kinesiology, Humboldt State University, Arcata, CA
  • Doctor of Chiropractic, Palmer College of Chiropractic, San Jose, CA
  • B.S. Kinesiology, Humboldt State University, Arcata, CA

Dorothy McKinnon  |   Member-At-Large

Dorothy McKinnon is a widely revered and highly respected Tribal Elder who serves on the Tribal Council as Member at Large.  Dorothy also serves on the Tribal Gaming Commission and works closely with the Chairman of the Commission to ensure gaming operations are in compliance.  Prior to working on Tribal interests, Dorothy began her career in the logging industry, and worked for many years in operations and administration.  Dorothy is a highly-skilled traditional basketry artist, and also contributes to the Blue Lake Rancheria Tribe’s preservation of this art form by teaching her skills to others. 

Dorothy has served on the Tribal Council for over a decade, and has lived on Tribal lands most of her life.  In addition to her regulatory and cultural duties, Dorothy is directly involved in the development and maintenance of Elderly Health & Welfare initiatives and Cultural Affairs education and acts as a cultural ambassador and goodwill representative for the Tribe at various Tribal Government proceedings and events.