Reclaiming Native Truth: A Project to Dispel America’s Myths and Misconceptions – which is a joint initiative of First Nations Development Institute and Echo Hawk Consulting – was featured on a panel recently at a diverse journalism conference in California.
The Excellence in Journalism conference was held in Anaheim Sept. 7-9, 2017. It was a collaboration of the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ), the Radio Television Digital News Association (RTDNA), the National Association of Hispanic Journalists (NAHJ), and the Native American Journalists Association (NAJA).
The panel, titled Reclaiming Native Truth: Dispelling Myths and Overcoming Invisibility, featured Project Co-Director Crystal Echo Hawk (Pawnee), president and CEO of Echo Hawk Consulting; Chiara Sottile (Karuk), producer and reporter, NBC News; and Mark Trahant (Shoshone-Bannock), independent journalist and a faculty member at the University of North Dakota as the Charles R. Johnson Endowed Professor of Journalism. Trahant is also a member of the Reclaiming Native Truth Advisory Committee that comprises Native leaders, influential stakeholders, and racial equity experts who offer oversight, expertise and leadership to guide the First Nations/Echo Hawk project.
Reclaiming Native Truth is an effort to begin to dispel myths and misconceptions about Native Americans, plus address their invisibility. Reclaiming Native Truth is working to positively transform the popular image of and narrative on Native Americans to support social justice and positive, long-term change. This groundbreaking project is made possible by the following supporters: W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Pechanga Band of Luiseño Indians, Comcast Foundation, Northwest Area Foundation, Fund for Shared Insight, MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger, and the MAHADH Fund of HRK Foundation.
The panel drew a diverse range of attendees, from journalists to academics, and film artists to health professionals, many of whom took to social media in response to the panel. Here are some samples: