Chairman Leland Kinter
Leland Kinter is Tribal Chairman of the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation. Elected in January 2015, Chairman Kinter has two decades of leadership and government service for Yocha Dehe.
A lifetime Yolo County resident, Chairman Kinter was only 19 when he started in government in 1994, serving five years as a Tribal Council Member. In 1999, when the Yocha Dehe Tribal Gaming Agency was formed to regulate the Tribe's gaming business, he became its first Chairman, serving until 2015. He returned to Tribal Council in 2009 for one term as Tribal Secretary. He did not seek re-election, choosing to focus his full attention on tribal language, culture and education.
Chairman Kinter is the driving force behind Yocha Dehe's efforts to preserve its native Patwin language. He leads an innovative teaching program for adults and children that combines technology, social interaction and inter-generational communication and has earned an American Indian Languages Credential from the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing. Language, he believes, is a critical element for the resurgence of the Tribe's culture and he hopes learning Patwin will allow the children to connect directly with their heritage.
In his role as Chairman of Yocha Dehe's Cultural Resources Committee, he oversees efforts to preserve and restore Yocha Dehe heritage and culture. And because it is a Tribal Historic Preservation Officer tribe, Yocha Dehe also assists other governments and businesses throughout Northern California in the identification and protection of sensitive historical sites.
Chairman Kinter is dedicated to preparing the next generation of Yocha Dehe citizens for professional success and tribal leadership and ensuring they have the educational opportunities they need. His deep commitment to tribal education extends far beyond Yocha Dehe. He is President of the California Tribal College and its Interim Board of Directors, helping lead the effort to make this dream a reality.