The President today announced that he will nominate Forrest J. Gerard, of Bowie, Md, to be Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Indian Affairs. He would replace Albert C. Zapanta. Gerard is a lobbyist in Washington whose clients include several Indian tribes and the Association of American Indian Affairs.
Gerard was born January 15, 1925, in Browning, Mont. He received a B.A. from Montana State University in 1949. He served in the U.S. Air Force from 1943 to 1945.
From 1949 to 1953, Gerard was a Federal field auditor for the Montana State Department of Public Instruction. From 1953 to 1955, he was a field consultant for the Montana Tuberculosis Association, and from 1955 to 1957 he was executive secretary of the Wyoming Tuberculosis and Health Association.
Gerard was a tribal relations officer for the Indian Health Service from 1957 to 1965. In 1966 and 1967, he was legislative liaison officer in the Bureau of Indian Affairs in Washington. He was Director of the Office for Indian Progress at the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare from 1967 to 1971.
From 1971 to 1976, Gerard was a professional staff member on the Committee on Interior and Insular Affairs. Since 1976, he has been self-employed as a lobbyist.
Gerard has served as Executive Secretary of the Surgeon General's Advisory Committee on Indian Health and has been on the advisory committee of the Capitol Conference on Indian Poverty and the National Indian Health Committee of the Association on American Indian Affairs. He is a member of the National Congress of American Indians and serves on its Advisory Committee on Indian Health. Gerard received the Indian Achievement Award from the Indian Council Fire in Chicago in 1966.