WeAct: Annual Indigenous Service Learning Gathering

Event Date: 
May 30, 2013 - 9:00am

On May 30, Northwest Indian College's Indigenous Service Learning Office will host its annual gathering, called "WeAct: Weaving Sustainable Communities." The event will include presentations by dynamic tribal leaders and activities, including experiential traditional foods workshops.

Brian Cladoosby, Swinomish Chairman
Rebecca Tobias, United Nations Delegate
Paul "Che oke ten" Wagner, Saanich tribal member, storyteller and flutist
Chief Rueben George, Indigenous community organizer and spiritual leader

The gathering will begin at 9 a.m. in the Log Building on NWIC's main campus. Everyone is welcome and must register before the event, which is free for NWIC students and staff and $30 for others. Register at www.regonline.com/weact. For more information, call (360) 392- 4384.


8:30-8:55 Registration and continental breakfast

9-9:25 Welcome: Indigenous Service Learning Committee
Justin Guillory, President of Northwest Indian College
Juanita Jefferson, Lummi Tribal Elder

9:25-9:30 Cultural opening and prayer: Joel Ridley, NWIC student and Lummi Tribal Member

9:30-10:30 Speaker: Brian Cladoosby, Chairman Swinomish Nation

10:45-11:45 Speaker: Chief Rueben George, Tsleil-Waututh Nation

12:00-12:30 Traditional Foods and Practices: Earth Oven Demonstration: Cooperative Extension: Vanessa Cooper, Traditional Plants Program and NWIC students Cathy Ballew and Winona Bearchum

12: 30-2:00 Barbecue Lunch provided by NWIC Student Mentors; Poster Session provided by NWIC students

2-2:30 Chief Iron Eagle and Treaty Delegate, Yankton Nation

2:30-3:45 Speaker/Workshop: Rebecca Tobias Global Trustee of United Religions Initiative and Program Director of Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Ethics

4-5:15 Speaker/Workshop: Paul Cheoketen Wagner, Wsaanich Nation, Native American Flute Player and Storyteller

5:30-7 Traditional Foods Honoring Dinner: Students and Partners who are making a difference

7-9 Native Voice: Raising your voice to “Protect the Sacred” with Paul Cheoketen Wagner


Brian Cladoosby
As chairman of the Swinomish Tribe and recipient of the Ecotrust Indigenous Leadership Award, Cladoosby has shown exceptional skill in strengthening economic and environmental conditions among Coast Salish tribal communities. He has cultured a unified voice for members of 66 Coast Salish Tribes and Nations, allowing them to protect indigenous human rights and to restore the region from ecological degradation. Cladoosby has also led regional and national efforts to form new ties between Salish people, scientists and the Obama administration.

Chief Rueben George
Sundance Chief Rueben George is an Indigenous community organizer and spiritual leader. He is a Lakota Sun Dance Chief and the grandson of Chief Dan George, the Oscar nominated widely respected native leader. Rueben has been making drums for 17 years & has handmade over 2000 drums. Rueben is now coordinating the fight against Kinder Morgans proposed tar sands oil pipeline into Vancoucer Harbour. This fight has significant implications for indigenous sovereignty, climate change the future of the global oil economy.

Chief Iron Eagle (Frank Sanchez)
Chief Iron Eagle is the last principle headsman for the Yankton Sioux Fire of The Great Sioux Nation. He has taken on the indigenous responsibility of protecting the sacred by working for treaty rights for 30 years. Chief Iron Eagle is also a traditional spiritual leader for the Yankton Nakota people.

Rebecca Tobias
Rebecca Tobias is a Global Council Trustee of the United Religions Initiative and the Program Director of the Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Ethics. As a Fellow with the Office of High Commissioner for Human Rights for the Working Groups for Indigenous Populations, Rebecca assisted in the drafting of resolutions presented for the Human Rights Sub-Commission meeting held in August 2005 and since that time has served as a delegate to the United Nations for several CSO’s including the inaugural meeting of the Tripartite Forum on Interfaith Cooperation for Peace.

Paul “Che oke ten” Wagner
Paul "Che oke ten" Wagner is an award winning Native American flutist and internationally-performing presenter of the traditional songs & stories of his Coast Salish tribal ancestors. He enjoys sharing the warmth, humor & wisdom of these beautiful "teachings," (as they are known in the sacred tradition of his people) in an engaging & interactive way, his Native flute songs have come to him with visions of healing & prayer for all relations (tree people, animal people, human people).