Male Co-President | Joseph Davis: Hello there! My name is Joseph Davis, and I come from the Gila River Indian Community in southern Arizona; from the Akimel O’odham tribe. I am 23 years old and I currently work for Chipotle Mexican Grill. Ilove helping people pursue their passions. No matter what their goals might be. I think there are a lot of great things that Native youth are capable of and I want to be one of the people that inspires those voices.
Female Co-President | SuSun Fisher | 19, is a proud member of the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians. She formerly served as the 2016-2017 Northwest Representative of the NUC Executive Committee. She is a student at The University of New Mexico where she hopes to obtain her Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. Currently, Ms. Fisher resides in Albuquerque, New Mexico but is originally from Grand Ronde, Oregon. SuSun has previously served as Female Co President of the Siletz Tribal Youth Council. Her work with UNITY begin when she was 14, when she was named a UNITY “25 Under 25” award recipient. She furthered her leadership skills in 2014 as a White House Tribal Youth Ambassador and again in 2015 when she was named a UNITY Earth Ambassador. SuSun is a committed member to her community and plans on empowering and advocating for all native youth.
A copy of the November 2017 National UNITY Council Executive Committee’s conference call minutes are available HERE for download/viewing.
UNITY’s Co-Presidents Sophie Tiger, Comanche/Standing Rock Sioux, and Hamilton Seymour, Nooksack/Stz’ umimus First Nation, recently joined about 400 youth leaders from around the country for the second annual Youth POWER: From Rooted Resilience to Rising Power convening in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The event was hosted by the Funders’ Collaborative on Youth Organizing (FCYO) and FCYO’s Youth Community Organizing Resource Exchange (Youth CORE). Youth organizers from more than 100 other groups from across the U.S. participated in three days of exciting activities including organizing trainings, relationship building, strategy development, learning tours, and fun.
“Youth Power Rising was an amazing conference! I had the opportunity to meet youth from all backgrounds who are doing phenomenal things to change the conditions within their community and for society. I gained knowledge of strategies to create change within Indian Country and I cannot wait to share these ideas and strategies with the Executive Committee and the youth! I would love to thank UNITY for once again providing endless opportunities that allow growth in leadership development,” said Tiger.
“This conference was a success. You really have to take a moment and appreciate F.C.Y.O. for hosting something that can be tough to host but can easily inspire someone to be a leader. I acknowledge their outstanding effort and success for this conference because I know how hard it can be to help facilitate and organize a conference with 400 plus people. I commend them from a personal perspective as I have been attending UNITY conferences since 2013, but I have been able to work behind the scenes since 2014. There’s a lot of little things that go into making a big conference successful. As an attendee, I got to learn and grow as I sat down in some pretty intense workshops. This conference was just amazing from the people I met, and from what I was able to learn. Of course, I wouldn’t have had this opportunity if it wasn’t for U.N.I.T.Y. So I have to say ‘thank you’ to this organization once again, for helping strengthen my leadership,” said Seymour.
Youth Power Rising encouraged students to learn about historical and current impacts of colonization and explore resiliency practices, tools and cultural practices that have stood the test of time. In addition, youth discussion focused on strengthening the self-determination of communities to have the political, economic and cultural power to build just, healthy and thriving communities.
UNITY thanks FCYO for inviting UNITY youth leaders to participate.
Outgoing Executive Committee challenged UNITY Youth Councils to create community projects focused on Bullying Awareness at the 2017 National Conference. The National UNITY Council adopted the HERO Initiative and Resolution at their Annual Business Meeting this summer in Denver, Colorado.
H.E.R.O. stands for the traditional concepts that can be used to live a healthy lifestyle when faced with adversity: Healing, Empower, Respect and Overcome. The Executive Committee hopes that UNITY Youth Councils will encourage others to “Be a Hero” in their home communities to the combat negative consequences associated with bullying. How can your youth help spread awareness? For more information or to let us know of your HERO project please contact your Regional Representative or the EC Liaison Josh Tso at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The National UNITY Council’s resolution is available HERE.
The following individuals were elected during the 2017 National UNITY Conference in Denver, CO to serve on the 2017-2018 National UNITY Council Executive Committee.
Female Co-President | Sophie Tiger, 19, is an enrolled member of the Comanche Nation of Oklahoma and also from the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe. She has used her experience in her leadership roles to devote her time to contribute to the change within her own community. Sophie played an instrumental role in the development of a drug free youth empowerment initiative that is still supported by the Native community in Comanche Country. During her time at the White House Tribal Leaders Conference as a Youth Ambassador, she had the opportunity to help bring awareness of this initiative to the national level. During President Barack Obama’s address to the Tribal Leaders, he stated that the White House Tribal Youth Ambassadors would also be considered the inaugural class of Youth Ambassadors for Generation Indigenous (Gen-I). Ms. Tiger continued her work with the White House by serving as a member of the steering committee for the first ever White House Tribal Youth Gathering. Read More
Minutes of the Executive Committee meeting that took place on July 13, 2017 may be viewed HERE.
Each year, during the National UNITY Conference, the National UNITY Council business meeting takes place. It is here that voting members (one male and one female rep from an aﬃliated youth council and aﬃliated Individual members of UNITY) elect to the Executive Committee, two Co- Presidents and ten Area Representatives to represent ten geographically deﬁned areas of the UNITY Network.
National UNITY Council – Regional REP, CLICK HERE.
The following individuals were elected during the 2016 National UNITY Conference in Oklahoma City, OK to serve on the 2016 – 2017 National UNITY Council Executive Committee.
Female Co-President: Sarah Scott, 22 is a member of the Lummi Nation. She formerly served as the 2014-2015 Female Co-President of the NUC Executive Committee. She is the senior advisor for the Xwlemi’ Youth Council and currently a student at Northwest Indian College where she will be starting her Bachelors in Human Services in the fall of 2016. In collaboration with her youth council Sarah started the I WILL LIVE Campaign focused on suicide prevention and awareness. Sarah is a committed member of her community, culture, and “shalengen-way of life” to protect and preserve who are as indigenous people.
Male Co-President: My name is Hamilton Seymour, I’m 17 years old and I’m a member of Nooksack Indian Tribe & Chemanius First Nation. I’m currently a senior attending Mount Baker high school & I’m also taking college classes through the running start program. Through youth/leadership programs such as; U.N.I.T.Y. (United National Indian Tribal Youth) CNAY (Center for Native American Youth) WeRNative. I was able to step out of my comfort zone because I was motivated enough to take a healthy risk to try and lead. As I took more healthy risks, opportunities presented themselves. With opportunities became moments I’ll never forget. I can’t help but thank the creator for everything that’s happened to me, and I know that I still have quite a journey to go.