Frances R. Sjoberg

Frances R. Sjoberg

Partner vCard
201 East Washington Street
Suite 1200
Phoenix, AZ 85004

Ms. Sjoberg is a partner in the firm’s Tribal Affairs, Gaming and Business Transactions practice groups. Her practice focuses ‎on intergovernmental agreements, tribal business transactions, real estate and complex project management. ‎

Ms. Sjoberg’s experience includes compact and contract negotiation; leasing and rights-of-way on Tribal lands; jurisdictional conflicts; regulatory matters; federal reserved water rights; public lands; and legislation drafting and analysis. She ‎has represented governmental entities, tribal enterprises, investors, receivers and developers on purchase-sale and lease transactions, fee-to-trust applications, loan workouts, multiparty negotiations, and settlement agreements. 

Memberships & Affiliations

  • California Indian Law Association, Member, 2019-present
  • Arizona Center for Civic Leadership, Flinn-Brown Fellow, 2012-present
  • University of Arizona Foundation, President's Club, 2014-present
  • University of Arizona Poetry Center, Development Committee Member, 2014-present
  • Federal Bar Association, Indian Law Section
  • State Bar of Arizona, Real Property Section, Indian Law Section
  • Maricopa County Bar Association, Member
  • Native American Bar Association, Arizona
  • Woodlea Irrigation Water Delivery District No. 2, Board of Trustees, 2013-2015

Representative Matters

  • Negotiation of Tribal-State gaming compacts in Arizona and California.
  • Representation of developers in leasing and financing transactions related to leasehold interests on Tribal lands.
  • Represented Tribe in development and opening of a $400 million gaming facility after more than a decade of overcoming political obstacles and legal challenges.  Representation included drafting tribal law and policies, tribal authorizations, negotiation of contracts, and preparation of a fee-to-trust application involving Carcieri analysis.
  • Represented Tribe in settlement agreement with the federal government relating to a law enforcement contract under the Indian Self-Determination and Educational Assistance Act.
  • Represented Tribe in fee acquisition of real property and liquor licenses in Apache County to eradicate nuisance businesses affecting Tribal and neighboring communities.
  • Provided Indian law counsel to lessee restaurateur in negotiating lease agreements with a Tribal gaming authority for space lease in a new tribal casino.
  • Represented lender in acquisition of luxury resort, hotel and related assets in lieu of ‎foreclosure.
  • Represented court-appointed receiver in reacquisition and divestment of various real property ‎interests and assets in New Mexico, Texas and Hawaii in conjunction with litigation and value-‎maximizing endeavors by joint defense parties.‎
  • Represented preferred equity lender in acquisition from special servicer of $142 million ‎multifamily portfolio with 14 properties across 6 states.
  • Represented limited liability company owner of assembled property in condemnation actions ‎involving a state entity and lone wolf member expelled from company owner.
  • Represented a small business in purchase and financing of its first commercial property.

Related News

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DeWald, Freeman share John P. Frank Pro Bono Attorney of the Year Award
59 attorneys earn recognition for providing more than 50 pro bono hours in 2016
Tribal land development articles feature Thomas, Sjoberg
Attorneys quoted in two articles in AZRE – Arizona Commercial Real Estate magazine
Indian Country land use contracts complex, challenging
Attorneys from Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie to discuss strategies, challenges
Pro bono service awards presented by Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie
Annual awards honor memory of lawyer dedicated to equal justice and professionalism

Related Events

Past Events


  • Presenter, "Ninth Circuit Recognition of Tribal Court Jurisdiction," Western Indian Gaming Conference, February 2020
  • Moderator, "The Expansion of Tribal Court Jurisdiction," Western Indian Gaming Conference, February 2020
  • Presenter, “Christie v. NCAA, Is Sports Betting on the Way?” 23rd Annual Western Indian Gaming Conference, Rincon Reservation, San Diego County, February 2018
  • Presenter, "Negotiating Contracts on Tribal Lands, Resolving Easements and Rights of Way Issues on Reservation Lands," NBI Seminars, Flagstaff and Phoenix, February 2017


  • "Tribal Land Use Q&A," Commercial Executive Magazine, April 2017
  • "Six Things to Know When Developing on Tribal Land," AZ/RE, March-April 2017 (with Pilar Thomas)
  • Co-Author, "Excessive Speech, Civility Norms, and the Clucking Theorem," 44 Connecticut Law Review, 2011


  • AZ Business Leaders - Native American Law, 2021
  • AZ Big Media - Top 100 Lawyers in Arizona, 2020
  • Southwest Super Lawyers Rising Star - Native American Law, 2016-2020
  • Pro Bono Service Award - Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie, 2015, 2016
  • Arizona Law Review - Editor-in-Chief, 2010-2011
  • Tucson Business Edge - 40 Under 40 Award for Young Leaders, 2007

Other Info


J.D., University of Arizona, James E. Rogers College of Law, with honors
M.F.A., Warren Wilson College
B.A., University of Arizona

Bar Admissions

Arizona, 2012

Court Admissions

Arizona Supreme Court


Arizona Supreme Court, Justice John Pelander