Many Indigenous advocates are gearing up for the general election from fundraising for their Indigenous candidates, registering voters, fighting disenfranchisement, and everything in between.
Our moderator Stephine “Steph” Poston (Pueblo of Sandia) and three community change agent panelists Allie Young (Diné/Navajo Nation), April Fournier (Navajo), and Rio Fernandes (Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe) discussed what civic engagement means to them and answered questions live during the program.
About the Session:
Native Americans in Philanthropy welcomes you to engage in a gathering of nonprofits, philanthropy, emerging leaders and Native communities for discussions and collaborative action for building philanthropy rooted in Native traditions and values.
All four 2022 sessions are open to the public. In 2023, Member Education Sessions will be a benefit of our NAP Memberships. For more information on NAP Memberships, please email Rod Jacobs at [email protected].
Our curated education sessions of virtual conversations, panels, and speakers represent the diversity of Indian Country and the experiences of Indigenous Peoples in America. These sessions are designed for NAP members working in philanthropy and will focus on how philanthropy can operate differently to center Indigenous perspectives and values.
Through the curation of these sessions, NAP is passing the mic to individuals, Tribes, and Native nonprofits who are experts in their respective fields. This curated platform will foster an informed membership that will lead the shifting of the philanthropic sector in deeper, more impactful ways that serve the people, communities, and causes they care about.
ABOUT OUR SPEAKERS:
ALLIE YOUNG (Diné/Navajo Nation)
Founder, Protect The Sacred
Allie Young is the founder of Protect the Sacred, which educates and empowers the next generation of Navajo and Indian Country leaders and allies to use storytelling and community building to strengthen Indigenous sovereignty and protect Indigenous elders, languages, and medicine ways. Protect the Sacred is a program of Harness, an organization launched after the 2016 presidential elections to educate, inspire, and activate an interdependent community of cultural organizers to use the power of storytelling to imagine and create a more equitable world. Ahead of the 2020 elections, Young organized Ride to the Polls, which encouraged tribal citizens living on reservations and in remote communities to saddle up and travel to polling places.
APRIL FOURNIER (Navajo)
National Program Manager, Advance Native Political Leadership
April Fournier supports the development and delivery of the Native Leadership Institute’s Leadership Training Program and Native Data Fellowship.
April has extensive experience in community organizing, community leadership and development, coalition building, and training. She is currently serving as an at-large councilor on the city council in Portland, Maine, the first Native woman to serve in that office.
April resides with her husband, four children and two dogs in Portland. She also enjoys live music indoors or outdoors, family game night, beading, and reading science fiction and fantasy novels.
RIO FERNANDES (Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe)
Director of Civic Engagement, National Urban Indian Family Coalition
Rio Fernandes serves as the Director of Civic Engagement with the National Urban Indian Family Coalition, which advocates for urban Native people. In this role, Rio works closely with urban Indian 501C3s around the country to support their community-oriented civic engagement strategies. Rio also directs the NUIFC’s Weaving our Web Digital Equity, which coordinates funding to help close the digital divide among Native people.
MODERATOR: STEPHINE “STEPH” POSTON (Pueblo of Sandia)
President & CEO, Poston & Associates, LLC
“Steph” was born and raised on the Sandia Pueblo Indian Reservation. She worked for her tribe for eleven years before launching Poston & Associates, a full-service communications firm.
Steph’s expertise includes strategic facilitation, capacity building training, leadership development, strategic communication and event planning. She has worked with numerous tribes and tribal entities in New Mexico and throughout Indian Country on public relations and marketing campaigns, sacred site protection, voter empowerment, water rights, tribal policy development, economic development, education and healthcare.
She is a co-founder of Native Women Lead and is the current Chairwoman of the Southwestern Association for Indian Arts that hosts Indian Market.