Four of the six bands in the Minnesota Chippewa Tribe had contested primaries for chair.
At Grand Portage, Bobby Deschampe will be the new chair after winning a majority of votes over incumbent Beth Drost.
Incumbent Faron Jackson will be the chair at Leech Lake, and Incumbent Mike Fairbanks won a majority at White Earth.
The Mille Lacs Band will have a runoff between incumbent Melanie Benjamin and Carolyn Beaulieu. The general election is set for August 18, when committee member races will also be decided.
There’s a new mural on the front of Franklin Library down the street from the American Indian Center in Minneapolis.
“My name is Missy Whiteman, I belong to the Northern Arapaho and Kickapoo nations. And I am here on Franklin Avenue at the library. And we’re working on a thank you mural for AIM and for the native community for protecting the avenue.”
Missy Whiteman is an artist and filmmaker and the recipient of many awards including the 2020 McKnight Media Artist Fellowship.
“It’s really important to have indigenous voices right now, especially when we’re talking about rebuilding, and we’re talking about, you know, coming into the new world, because we’ve been a part of, you know, seeing system seeing, you know, society seeing structures that aren’t sustainable crumble. And, you know, the best metaphor that I’ve heard and seen in this movement is the Phoenix. And so we see like murals all around, the Twin Cities, we see that metaphor, because it’s like, well, things are crumbling, they’re, they’re, you know, projects like this, just small, you know , one day projects that are give me think thanks to community, people are coming together and, you know, are helping.”
A phoenix rising from the ashes suits what’s happening down on Lake Street at Migizi. Migizi supports Native youth as they claim their heritage and find their creativity. The building burned during the protests, but donors and volunteer are stepping up – and recently there was a unity celebration.
“Migizi has kind of been a second home for me just because my brother worked there when he was in high school,” said Angelica Deloria. “I’ve known the people for a long time. I really think that the current events that have happened with George Floyd are going to highly impact us here at Migizi. Not only do we have to rebuild our current site, which was burned down, but we also have to help our brothers and sisters within the native community who have been impacted some way either be physically or emotionally during this time. I personally have been reaching out to both my family members and friends who currently are still living on the south side of Minneapolis, making sure that they’re okay and staying safe. I grew up in that same neighborhood. So I’m doing everything in my power to help both Migizi and my neighborhood rebuild and thrive during this time of much needed change.”
“Hello everyone, my name is Jennifer. I’m 16 and I’m from the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe. I am also a part of the Ikidowin acting ensemble. We do theater activities and plays around our communities. On Monday they decided to draw a mural and George Floyd’s name on their building. I got to be a part of this really cool opportunity. And it was super fun to experience. We got there at four in the afternoon and got back at six or seven. And we’re going back on Thursday to finish the job. We painted this mural to show that we support the Black Lives Matter movement and that we stand with you and we support you. My piece was black lives matter. I made it in different and bold colors to catch people’s eyes. I wrote matter in red handprints. I felt that that was pretty powerful to write it like that. It shows that how the police department have blood on their hands. And we aren’t getting the justice. It was a good atmosphere to be around. And that’s what I was up to this week.”
Minnesota Native News is eager to hear from more youth. If you have a story to share, leave us a message on our Facebook Page or at 612 430 9368.