Community Highlights

The Community Center was filled with Native American and Hispanic students from Dowagiac High School November 21, there to learn from and collaborate with Michigan State University business students representing those two groups. The event featured professional development workshops led by the college students that focused on leadership and presentation skills and building a resume.

Elders and Mno Bmadsen each donated $500 to this event, and Junior Youth Council donated $1000, providing eight children in the community $2000 to shop for Christmas gifts for themselves and their families.

Everyone met at the Community Center December 13, where the 11 participating Tribal Police Officers lined up their cars. Each youth was assigned an Officer to shop with, had lunch, and each pair got their photo taken in front of the line of vehicles.

Last month at the National Congress of American Indians 71st Annual Convention, Midwest regional caucus members elected Pokagon Tribal Council member at large Roger Rader to be alternate vice president on the organization’s Executive Committee.

In this role, Rader will work closely with Aaron Payment, Midwest area vice president and chair of the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe, to speak on behalf of the Midwest tribes on national issues involving Indian Country. He’ll play a big part in NCAI general sessions and breakout sessions during NCAI events.

One Story (Ngot Yajmowen) is a grassroots, community-based program designed to build awareness of contemporary issues. One Story partners currently include the Pokagon Band, Dowagiac Area History Museum, Dowagiac District Library, Dowagiac Dogwood Fine Arts Festival Committee, Dowagiac Union Schools, and Southwestern Michigan College.

Council members gathered in the Community Center on a chilly October Saturday for collaboration and discussion of the future. Members from the Veterans, Elders, Youth, and Tribal Councils sat in a circle, each having time to speak.

Gayle "Rusty" Green, secretary of the Ogitchedaw Veterans Board, spoke about the need for more women in leadership, encouraged by the number of women in attendance.