Our Mission

iTEMA promotes a collaborative, multi-disciplinary approach to coordinate and enhance emergency management, response, and recovery to protect all Tribal communities.

What is iTEMA?


iTEMA is an emerging national Tribal association created for Indian Country, by Indian Country. The mission of iTEMA is to promote a collaborative, multi-disciplinary approach to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate against all hazards that impact our Tribal communities. iTEMA supports education, training and preparedness activities in a manner that promotes cooperation and equality for the whole community and works to develop partnerships with Tribal, Federal, state, and local agencies and organizations for the advancement of emergency management and services. To this end, we continue to formalize our organizational capacity and structure by and developing business and strategic planning structures to launch the organization.

Why the “i”?


The “i” is ambiguous in that it has multiple meanings and makes us unique from any other tribal organization. The lowercase “i” versus the uppercase letter was added to show humility. It gives individual ownership in our association, “i” becomes one within the context of our Team or TEMA. It stands for: Indian, indigenous, inter-Tribal; “i” is a source for information both from the internet and in-person, iTEMA will provide support for incident response, and provide immediate assistance. iTEMA is innovative, inclusive and lastly the “i” (eye) provides vision and looks to the future. Leaving the “i” open to individual interpretation maintains the fundamental intention of the association: to collectively create, sustain, and support a national association for Indian Country, by Indian Country.

iTEMA's Purpose

  • Promote, facilitate and support emergency management and services through a collaborative, multi-disciplinary approach.
  • Enhance and improve efforts to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate against all hazards that may befall Tribal communities.
  • Encourage and facilitate participation in education, training and preparedness activities in a manner that promotes cooperation and equality for the whole community.
  • Secure for all Tribal people the rights and benefits afforded to them through treaties, the United States Constitution, executive action, federal legislation and United States Supreme Court decisions as they relate to the trust responsibility of the federal government with regard to Homeland Security, Emergency Management and Emergency Services.
  • Recognize, promote, and support, through all Association activities, the preservation and protection of traditional forms of government, cultural values and heritage.
  • Develop partnerships with Tribal, Federal, state, and local agencies and organizations for the advancement of emergency management and services.
  • Educate the public, iTEMA partners and other stakeholders about Tribal sovereignty, self-governance and cultural awareness.

iTEMA's Vision

Six different divisions within the organization:

  • Division of Fire
  • Division of EMS
  • Division of Emergency Management
  • Division of Homeland Security/Law Enforcement
  • Division of Incident Management
  • Division of Public Health

Each division would be further broken down to specific committees or groups that would focus on specific elements within that discipline. For example:

Division of Fire

Committees: Search and Rescue, Haz-Mat, Wildland Firefighting, Aircraft Rescue Firefighting (ARFF), Fire Chiefs, Fire Prevention, Arson, Fire Explorers, etc.

Division of Emergency Management

Committees: Preparedness, Response, Recovery, Mitigation, Risk Management, CERT, Amateur Radio, Public Works, etc.

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