Local programs are operated by a “longhouse” which is incorporated as a franchise of National Longhouse, Ltd. The longhouse provides centralized organizational structure for any or all NATIONAL LONGHOUSE® programs that may be operating in any one particular area. This allows for the coordination of activities, marketing, and administrative or financial operations.
Administration of the Local Longhouse
The Local Longhouse Council
Each local longhouse is governed by a body known as the Longhouse Council. The council oversees local program operations, plans events, and sets goals. Each longhouse council consists of three bodies:
- Longhouse Elders (officers)
- Longhouse Representatives (delegates to the regional advisory lodge)
- Program Representatives:
- Nation Elders (for large programs)
- Tribe Chiefs (for small programs)
The Longhouse Elders
The highest administrators within each local longhouse are the Longhouse Elders. The longhouse elders serve as the longhouse’s executive officers and are elected by, and from within the Longhouse Council. The elders normally consists of, but are not limited to, the following key officers:
Spokesperson for the longhouse. Responsible for overseeing longhouse operations and communications for the NATIONAL LONGHOUSE® programs for that particular local area. Presides over the meetings held for the Longhouse Council and the Longhouse Elders.
Assistant and aide to the Longhouse Chief. Assumes the role of the Longhouse Chief in his or her absence.
Treasurer for the longhouse. Responsible for all financial transactions and accounting.
Recorder, archivist, and general secretary for the longhouse. Responsible for the recording of all minutes for the Longhouse Council and the Longhouse Elders’ meetings; the notification and documentation of all administrative votes; archiving all important administrative documents.
The Longhouse Representatives
Each local longhouse designates two members of their choice to serve as voting representatives to their regional advisory lodge. The Longhouse Representatives attend periodic regional advisory lodge meetings and report back to their longhouse council. Through their representation, the longhouse has their concerns addressed at the regional level and has a voice in determining their lodge’s agenda and election of its elders.
The Program Representatives (Nation Elders or Tribe Chiefs)
Depending on the number of program participants it has, a local longhouse council will have one of the following groups of representatives:
Longhouses with multiple nations will have a delegation of nation elders (nation officers) within their longhouse council. The elected nation elders from each nation will collectively form the delegation. The Local longhouse will determine the number of nation elders each nation is to have and the function for those elected officers.
Longhouse councils without multiple nations will have a delegation of tribe chiefs in lieu of the nation elders. The delegation will consist of the elected tribe chiefs and any other tribal officers the longhouse deems necessary.