About Robert "Bobby Don" Gifford
The Founder of GIFFORD LAW, P.L.L.C. in Oklahoma City, Mr. Gifford is a trial lawyer with over 20 years of experience in federal, state, tribal, and military courts with a practice in Civil Rights, Criminal Law, Native American law, Military Law, family law, and Government Contracting. Mr. Gifford also represents tribes, companies, and small business owners in preparing for criminal compliance and corporate risk assessments’ as well as being a nationally recognized "cannabis consultant” to entrepreneurs after the legalization of marijuana in Oklahoma. Mr. Gifford’s unique background with a career as a former federal prosecutor with the U.S. Department of Justice, a retired Army Colonel JAG (active duty and reservist), a tribal court judge, a former Assistant District Attorney, a municipal judge for the City of Oklahoma City, and adjunct law professor.
Prior to going into private practice, as an Assistant United States Attorney (federal prosecutor) in Oklahoma City, Reno, NV, and Louisville, KY, where Mr. Gifford has served as the Tribal Liaison, Human Trafficking Coordinator, Anti-Terrorism Coordinator, and Project Safe Neighborhoods Coordinator for the United States Department of Justice. In addition, with his experience, he was selected to review federal pardons and commutations for consideration for the President of the United States. During his decorated career with the Department of Justice, Mr. Gifford has been honored for outstanding performance by the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (2006 & 2015), Director of the United States Marshal’s Service (2008), and the United States Department of Agriculture (2004). In addition, Mr. Gifford served as the prosecutor to handle all cases at the famed "Burning Man" festival in Black Rock, Nevada for five years.
“Judge” Gifford, who began his legal career at the Cherokee Nation under Chief Wilma Mankiller, is a tribal member of the Cherokee Nation and also serves as a tribal court judge for five Native American tribes. A former editor for the American Indian Law Review, Mr. Gifford is the Chief Judge for both the Kaw Nation and the Iowa Tribe, an Associate District Judge for the Miami Tribe and Seminole Tribes of Oklahoma, and a Supreme Court Justice for the Comanche Nation of Oklahoma. “Judge” Gifford has also vigorously defended tribes in attacks on their tribal sovereignty by both states and individuals and has succeeded in stopping legal actions that belong in tribal courts.
As a military lawyer (Army JAG), Mr. Gifford served on both active duty and as a Reservist until his retirement as a Colonel in 2019. A former active-duty military defense counsel and prosecutor, as well as Reserve military defense counsel, Staff Judge Advocate (General Counsel), and Commander for the 3d Legal Operations Command outside of Boston. “Colonel” Gifford is a graduate of the Army JAG Corps’ Officer Basic and Advance Course, Command and General Staff College, and the U.S. Army War College. In 2007-08, Colonel Gifford mobilized back onto active duty to the “War Courts” at Guantanamo Bay where he served as the Legal Spokesman to the worldwide media and Deputy Director of Legal Operations. In 2021, the Cherokee Nation awarded Colonel Gifford the Cherokee Nation Medal of Patriotism and Warrior Award.
As a renowned legal educator, Mr. Gifford has served as an Adjunct Law Professor with the law schools at the University of Oklahoma, Oklahoma City University, and the University of Arkansas teaching Trial Advocacy, Military Law, National Security Law, and Homeland Security Law. He has also served as an instructor at the Army JAG School (The Judge Advocate General’s School and Learning Center) in Charlottesville, Virginia; for the National Judicial College in Reno, Nevada, and for the National District Attorney’s Association on firearm prosecutions. Mr. Gifford has been a guest speaker at the Sovereignty Symposium, the Creek Nation District Court CLE, and for dozens of continuing educations classes for the Oklahoma Bar Association.
A leader in the bar association, Mr. Gifford currently serves as the Chair of the Military & Veterans Law Section for the third time (2012/2013) and previously served as the Chair of the Oklahoma Bar Association's Criminal Law Section in 2018, and formerly served on the state bar's Board of Governors. Mr. Gifford also served three years on the Oklahoma County Bar Association’s Board of Directors and served as a Delegate for Oklahoma County to the state bar’s annual convention. Mr. Gifford has published over a dozen articles in the Oklahoma Bar Journal educating other lawyers on federal criminal law, military law, and issues in legal ethics. The Oklahoma Bar Association’s Criminal Law Section named Mr. Gifford “Professional Advocate of the Year” in 2013 and recognized him with the Justice Cardozo Award in 2016.
Mr. Gifford earned his Juris Doctorate from the University of Oklahoma College of Law where he served as an Editor on the American Indian Law Review, graduated with honors with three bachelor's degrees from Southwestern College in Winfield, Kansas where he lettered four years in both football and track. Mr. Gifford also holds a Masters in Strategic Studies from the U.S. Army War College at Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania.