Secretary Steve Emery is an enrolled member of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe and spent his early years on the Rosebud Reservation. He attended high school on the Crow Creek Reservation. In 1980, he joined the United States Army and is a combat veteran. He has an extensive background working in various positions with the Army’s Judge Advocate General Corps (JAG).
Following his military service he worked briefly in agriculture until becoming an advocate for Dakota Plains Legal Service. His advocate experience led him into court service first as a Judge for the Eastern District of Pine Ridge based out of Kyle, S.D., then an Associate Judge for the Rosebud Sioux Tribe. Before taking the position as Secretary for the Department of Tribal Relations he was serving as a Chief Judge for the Crow Creek Sioux Tribe and a Special Judge for the Yankton Sioux Tribe and the Rosebud Sioux Tribe.
During the 139th Annual Rosebud Wacipi and Fair, Emery had a naming ceremony and was given the name "Mato Owe Ota" meaning "Bear with Many Paths."
Secretary Emery is an avid sportsman who likes hunting and fishing.
One of his favorite motto’s is “If you have all the answers, you don’t know all the questions.”
Secretary of Tribal Relations