Tanya Gibbs, 34
It was free pizza during a lunch visit from Native American students from Grand Rapids Public Schools that granted Tanya Gibbs, a Native American herself, an opening at Rosette LLP to excel as a managing partner at the firm.
“The chaperone happened to be on the Tribal Council for my tribe, the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians, where I was able to learn about the law and my own culture,” she said. “The attorney I worked for there introduced me to an attorney at Rosette and the rest is history.”
Her history is still being written, but Gibbs said since she has been in that role, she has been able to grow the firm to include a group of young attorneys who are committed to the betterment of Indian Country and the Grand Rapids community.
“I provide the legal framework for tribes to create business entities, work with those entities to create proper corporate governance policies and procedures, and then work with those entities to acquire companies, grow their businesses and, ultimately, give back to their tribal communities and the larger surrounding communities, including Grand Rapids,” she said. “Through much of my work and with the help of my clients I have been able to bring tribal issues to the attention of the local community and build long-lasting relationships for all.”
Some of the work Gibbs is doing also happens outside of her firm. She serves as a counselor for the American Indian Law Section of the State Bar of Michigan and has been able to help issue annual awards to Michigan Indian law students.