David Matheson was born on the Coeur d’Alene Indian Reservation in 1951 at the home of his grandparents, Nick and Margaret Campbell. Since his birth, Matheson has been a member of the Schi'tsu'umsh people, now called the Coeur d’Alene Tribe.
His native language is the Salish dialect, which is unique to this tribe, but shares common elements with the languages of other northern plateau tribes including the Spokane, the Flathead, the Okanogan, and the Kalispel.
David Matheson is a man who walks adroitly in Indian and Anglo worlds. He has accomplished this by integrating traditional tribal teachings and practices into his successful business career.
David Matheson was CEO of the Coeur d’Alene Casino & Resort Hotel in Worley, Idaho, which was voted #1 casino in the Spokesman Reader Review for three consecutive years. He has served as a Council leader, Tribal Chairman, and manager of various tribal operations. He has received many honors for his work in preserving cultural traditions, the native language, and ceremonial practices, including a Commendation from the Secretary of the Interior for Outstanding Service.
Matheson has spent a lifetime learning and living the teachings of the Coeur d’Alene. Hunting, root digging, berry picking, and camping are a major part of his and his wife’s regular routine, as are observing the Tribe’s traditions and ceremonial dances and events. He has worked and lived most of his adult life on the reservation, where he has served as a Council leader, the Tribal Chairman, and manager of various tribal operations.
Matheson holds an M.A. in Business Administration from the University of Washington. During the past twenty years, Matheson has held many esteemed positions, including serving as Deputy Commissioner for Indian Affairs for the U.S. Department of the Interior; the CEO for Coeur d’Alene Development Enterprises; an advisor for the President’s Commission on Reservation Economies; and a delegate to the People’s Republic of China’s Native American Trade Mission.
In his spare time, Matheson enjoys training and riding horses, competing in cutting and reining, as well as participating in Native American traditional dances and pow wows. He resides in Northern Idaho with his wife, Jenny. They have six full-grown children.
RED THUNDER is Matheson’s award-winning novel.