Established in 1968, Lumbee Regional Development Association, Inc. was created to provide services for the Lumbee Indian communities. With main offices in Pembroke, NC, LRDA has worked aggressively to improve services for members of the Lumbee Tribe. The Board of Directors for many years, served as the governing body of the Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina. The Staff and Board members of LRDA have extensive experience in human services, governmental services, operations of grant funded programs, and Indian affairs. The Board of Directors has connections to grassroots Lumbee communities as well as local, state, and federal governmental offices.
LRDA is committed to providing a range of valuable services that assist disadvantaged Indian people. The organization works in conjunction with a number of governmental organizations to provide services and improve social and economic conditions in Lumbee communities.
LRDA is widely recognized by the Lumbee people, the federal government, the State of North Carolina, other states, foundations, funding entities, and other Indian Tribes and urban Indian organizations as an organization that serves Lumbee people.
On November 7, 2000, the Lumbee enrolled membership established a new government whose members were sworn in on January 13, 2001. Prior to this election, the mandate of the 1984 Tribal Referendum authorized LRDA to seek federal recognition for the Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina. LRDA exercises a broad range of governmental powers. At the heart of federal recognition efforts was LRDA's authority to strengthen the Tribe's position by demonstrating that it had a coherent, continuous, and effective government structure through the performance of the four basic governmental functions: (1) promoting the health and welfare of tribal members; (2) identifying membership; (3) representing the Tribe before other governments and organizations; and (4) resolving disputes which fall within the tribal government's purview.
In the early 80's, RDA established the Lumbee tribal rolls, sponsored, developed and promoted the Tribe's official petition for federal acknowledgment, represented the Tribe before many other governments (federal, state, local and tribal), and provided for the social, cultural, health, economic, and educational welfare of the Lumbee people. On November 30, 2001, the Lumbee Tribal Rolls were transferred to the Lumbee Tribal Council for maintenance and use in administering tribal service programs.
LRDA's mission is to continuously assess the needs of Indian people and others in our service area, work to improve the quality of life, develop and/or obtain resources to fill the gap in the ongoing provision of social, health, economic, housing, education, job development and training services to meet the needs of our client population.
The LRDA Board of Directors continue to support the sovereignty, traditions, culture and values of the Lumbee people. LRDA continues to seek public input and support for the programs, services, and activities that it provides. LRDA is the main sponsor for theLumbee Homecoming, Powwow , and other Indian cultural events in the area.