Western Native Voice to Host National Conversation of Indigenous Leaders
Billings, Montana – To commemorate Indigenous People’s Day, Western Native Voice will host a national conversation of Indigenous leaders exploring the essential nature of Indigenous voice, the power of voting, and how both support Indigenous leadership and action. Entitled “Indigenous Rising: Voice, Vote, Action,” the live virtual event will be held Monday, October 12 from 6:00–7:30 PM MDT. The moderated panel discussion explores how Indigenous voices have transformed performing and fine arts, journalism and media, and political action.
Moderated by Loris Taylor, award-winning Hopi and Acoma journalist and President/CEO of Native Public Media Inc., the panelists include:
Acclaimed actress Kimberly Norris Guerrero, who portrayed Cherokee Principal Chief Wilma Mankiller in two films (among her many roles) and serves on the University of California, Riverside faculty where she is empowering future generations of storytellers;
Sean Sherman, also known as The Sioux Chef, an Oglala Lakota who is on a mission to make indigenous foods more accessible to as many communities as possible through his non-profit organization, North American Traditional Indigenous Food Systems (NATIFS);
Piikani artist, John Isaiah Pepion, best known for his captivating ledger art, but who is also building a brighter future for his community by working with troubled youth to promote the benefits of art as therapy; and
Marci McLean-Pollock, Executive Director of Western Native Voice, whose passion is helping others to find their voice and build their leadership skills to lead movements and change.
“We are on a mission to build a world in which all Indigenous people have a voice in their government and their future,” explains McLean-Pollack. “We are excited to host this panel discussion which celebrates Indigenous voice and identity. We hope it inspires young and old alike to find a cause about which they are passionate and raise their voice to build a better future.”
Western Native Voice is a non-profit, non-partisan organization working to increase Native American participation and engagement in voting and self-determination. They work to nurture and empower new Native leaders and impact policies affecting Native Americans through community organizing, education, advocacy, and leadership development.
“Voting isn’t just about today,” states McLean-Pollock. “Voting is about honoring our past and building a better tomorrow for our community. Our vote is our voice and we’ve come too far to be silenced.”
There is no cost to attend the Indigenous Rising discussion, but participants must register prior to the event in order to receive a link. For more information and to register, visit indigenousvote.com.