J.D. Colbert

Mr. Colbert (Muscogee-Creek/Chickasaw) is the nation’s most recognized and foremost expert on matters related to commercial banking and Indian tribes. Since 1987 he has assisted Indian tribes in starting or acquiring various types of banks and financial institutions.


During his 30+ year career, Mr. Colbert has served as president/CEO of three different banks; a board member of five banks; Founding Executive Director of the North American Native Bankers Association (an association of Native-owned banks in the US and Canada). He has assisted over a dozen Indian tribes in acquiring or starting commercial banks.

Mr. Colbert served a White House appointment to the Board of the Community Development Financial Institutions Fund at the U.S. Treasury and he has actively assisted many Indian tribes and Native groups to start Community Development Financial Institutions.

Colbert has managed over $22 billion under the US Treasury’s Troubled Asset Relief Program (a/k/a the Bank Bailout Bill) and was a board member of a $13 billion pension fund and formerly served as Deputy Assistant Secretary – Bureau of Indian Affairs for Economic Development where his duties included overseeing the $3 billion Indian Trust Fund and the BIA Loan Guaranty Fund.

Mr. Colbert began his career as a Bank Examiner for the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston. As such, he was the first Native American federal bank examiner in the history of the U.S. bank regulation system.

Mr. Colbert is active in legal, regulatory and policy formulation in the areas of banking, community development, economic development and Federal-Indian policy. He is a widely published author of op-ed pieces on subject matters related to banking as well as issues in Indian Country.

He holds an undergraduate degree in business management from the University of Oklahoma as well as masters degrees from both Harvard University and Johns Hopkins University.