Meet the new 25 UNDER 25 class members who were honored at the 2016 National UNITY Conference in Oklahoma City in July.
Birk Albert, 17, Athabascan, Lake Placid, NY: Henry “Birk” Albert is a member of the Koyukon Athabascan Nation from the village of Ruby, Alaska. He currently resides in Lake Placid, New York where he will be entering his senior year in high school this fall. Over this past year he has broadened his experiences and reconnected to Native communities because of UNITY and CNAY. Birk was among those selected to attend the White House Tribal Youth Gathering and the Tribal Nations Conference in Washington, DC last July. He was selected as a UNITY Earth Ambassador and has been able to share his viewpoint as an Indigenous youth raised in a subsistence bush lifestyle through speeches and slideshows. He has worked tirelessly to increase awareness about climate change and Alaska’s future through his school Environmental Club and the Adirondack Youth Climate Summit. Birk was instrumental in connecting New York and Alaska youth to work towards realizing youth driven climate summits where participants can share, take action and work collectively to address climate change. Birk likes to play Varsity soccer, study history and use social media to promote opportunities and progressive ideas among Native youth – GenIzine.blogspot.com.
Caitlin Bordeaux, 24, Rosebud Sioux, St. Francis, SD: Caitlin Bordeaux graduated from Black Hills State University with a major in Graphic Design and Communication and is a certified teacher in the state of South Dakota. After graduating college, she interned in Washington, DC through the Washington Internships for Native Students (WINS) Program. During her time in DC, she realized that her true passion was to work with youth in her community. Caitlin started teaching computer science/multimedia classes at St. Francis Indian School in 2015. She is an avid supporter of the arts, Computer Science for All, and Generation Indigenous. In the near future, Caitlin plans to pursue her master’s in education at Harvard University. She is grateful for this opportunity to work with inspiring Natives and to gain leadership skills to help better her community!