Deputy Commissioner for Communications and Relations
Nikki Farago is deputy commissioner at the Minnesota Department of Human Services, where she oversees Communications, Legislative Affairs and External Relations.
Farago comes to the position from her role as assistant commissioner of Children and Family Services. She has served for eight years at DHS in various roles, including director for legislative and external affairs, and deputy assistant commissioner, both for CFS. Previous, as deputy solicitor general for the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe, she litigated criminal and civil cases in tribal court, represented Mille Lacs Band in Indian Child Welfare Act child protection cases in state court and served as general counsel. In the past, Farago has worked for Mid-Minnesota Legal Services and Hennepin County District Court.
Farago earned a bachelor of science in psychology and bachelor of arts in political science from the University of Georgia, and a Juris Doctor from the University of Minnesota Law School. She has served as administrative director of the William E. McGee Civil Rights Moot Court, as president of the American Indian Law Student Association and as a representative to the Hennepin County Bar Association for the Minnesota American Indian Bar Association. Farago sits on the Board of Directors of the Indian Child Welfare Act Law Center.