What's New In the Community: November 2013
Monday, November 04 2013
Written by The Circle Staff,
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SMSC Announces Endowed Scholarship Recipients

PRIOR LAKE, Minn. – The Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community announced 41 new recipients of the SMSC Endowed Scholarship at the University of Minnesota for the 2013-2014 academic year. This scholarship program is designed to recruit and retain talented American Indian students with demonstrated financial need.

Since the program began in 2009, 151 students have received SMSC Endowed Scholarships. Based on grades and financial need, 72 of the previous 110 recipients have qualified for continuation of their scholarships in 2013-2014. Seventeen students have graduated thus far.

The SMSC Endowed Scholarship was established through a $2.5 million gift from the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community. The University of Minnesota matches the interest earned on this endowment fund with proceeds dedicated to providing scholarships for qualified American Indian students. The University's Office for Equity and Diversity administers the scholarship.

The following are Minnesota scholarship recipients: Heather Abrahamson, Fond du Lac Band of Chippewa; Robert Beaulieu, Red Lake Band of Chippewa; Carla Big Bear, Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe Indians; Lucas Bratvold, Red Lake Band of Chippewa; Benjamin Burk, White Earth Reservation; Evelyn Campbell, Minnesota Chippewa Tribe - Pillager Band; Sage Davis, Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe; Cole Folstad, White Earth Band of Ojibwe; Eric Goldsmith, Minnesota Chippewa Tribe - White Earth Reservation (Mississippi Band); Fawn Grauman-White, Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe; Vanessa Johnston, Dakota descendant Sissteon-Wahpeton/Lower Sioux; Veronica Kingbird, Red Lake Band of Chippewa; Kayla Kranitz, Red Lake Band of Chippewa; Alexandra McDougall, Minnesota Chippewa Tribe - White Earth Reservation (Mississippi Band); Benjamin Rosaasen, Upper Sioux Community; Cassandra Roy, Minnesota Chippewa Tribe - White Earth; Samantha Shade, Minnesota Chippewa Tribe - White Earth.

The 41 new scholarship recipients for the 2013-2014 academic year come from across the United States and from 25 different tribes. Additionally, 18 of the students are from Minnesota tribes, two are doctoral students; 16 are graduate students; and 25 are undergraduates. Twenty-seven scholarship recipients are female, 14 are male; 8 of the scholars are in the Master of Tribal Administration and Governance program at the University of Minnesota Duluth. Some of the students’ majors include elementary education, pharmacy, medicine, biology, psychology, American Indian studies, business administration, business management, history, art design, and studio art

For application information, visit Application materials received by March 1, 2014, will be given preference for the next academic year. The final deadline is August 1, 2014.

Tiwahe Foundation Announces Individual Grantees

MINNEAPOLIS – The Tiwahe Foundation is honored to announce that at their Oct. 8 board meeting, 12 grants were awarded to Native American individuals in the Twin Cities area through its American Indian Family Empowerment Program. This program awards $70,000-$80,000 annually to Native individuals and families seeking financial resources to achieve their goals, shape their future and make positive contributions to their community through three priority areas: Economic Self-sufficiency, Education and Cultural Connections.

Grants range from $500 to $2,500 enough to make a significant impact on grantees and the community and contributing to the self-determination of individuals. Individuals who received awards were in the following focus areas:

Goal 1: Preserving and Renewing Native Cultural Connections: Travis Decory, Sicangu Lakota and Zhawin Gonzalez, White Earth Band of Ojibwe.

Goal 2: Educational Achievement: Robert Blake, Red Lake Ojibwe; William Carter, Grand Portage Band of Ojibwe; Nicole Hendrickson, Sokaogon Band of Ojibwe; Charles Jackson, Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe; Kateri Palacio-Traxler, Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate; Gianna Strong, Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate; Carrie Warren, White Earth Band of Ojibwe; Tia Williams, White Earth Band of Ojibwe.

Goal 3: Economic Self-Sufficiency: Sandra Jones, Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate and Nicole Koenig-Roy, Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe.

AIFEP strives to reverse the social, educational and economic challenges facing American Indians by investing in human capital, skills, resources and cultural strengths that people possess that allow them to live healthy and productive lives, build strong relationships and make meaningful contributions to their communities.

Mille Lacs Member Named to Native American 40 Under 40

ONAMIA, Minn. – The Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe announced on Oct. 14 that Joseph Nayquonabe Jr., Commissioner of Corporate Affairs, is a 2013 “Native American 40 Under 40″ award recipient from the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development.

This prestigious award recognizes 40 emerging American Indian leaders from across Indian Country who have demonstrated leadership, initiative, dedication and have made significant contributions in business and/or in their communities.

“As a young Mille Lacs Band member, Joe is a positive influence on our community’s youth,” Melanie Benjamin, Mille Lacs Chief Executive said. “His leadership and integrity extend beyond the business world. He understands the importance of hard work and has committed to lifelong education and cultural responsibility to the Mille Lacs Band. For a national organization to recognize him – like NCAIED – says a lot about who he is as an individual and I’m very proud of the work he has done both personally and professionally.”

The awards was presented on Oct. 24 at NCAIED’s 38th Annual Indian Progress in Business awards gala in Chandler, Ariz.

Nayquonabe was appointed Commissioner of Corporate Affairs in September of 2012. He serves as the chief executive officer and chair of the board of directors for the Mille Lacs Band’s Corporate Commission. The Commission analyzes new business opportunities and oversees the band’s existing businesses, including Grand Casino Mille Lacs, Grand Casino Hinckley, Crowne Plaza St. Paul Riverfront hotel and the DoubleTree by Hilton Downtown St. Paul, as well as numerous small businesses. Nayquonabe played a key role in the purchase of two downtown St. Paul hotels by the Mille Lacs Band in 2012.

He has a bachelor’s degree in marketing from St. Cloud State University, a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management and a master of tribal administration and governance from the University of Minnesota - Duluth.


Leech Lake Organization Elects New Members

MINNEAPOLIS – The Leech Lake Twin Cities Local Indian Council announced the election of new members Carrie Day Aspinwall, Laurie Harper, Christine Roy, Richard White.

The recently-elected members were seated at October meeting of the Local Indian Council Meeting. Leech Lake Twin Cities Local Indian Council Meetings are held the last Tuesday of each month at the Minnesota Indian Women's Resource Center, 2300 15th Ave. S., Minneapolis, MN 55404

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