Three Native young women served as this year’s UNITY News anchors and field reporters last month at the National UNITY Conference in Minneapolis. Marla Marina, Leech Lake Band Ojibwe, and Ally Gee, Navajo, served as co-anchors while Sonwai Walayuta, Hualapai, served as a Field Reporter. All three auditioned for UNITY News prior to the conference. Attendees watched the mini-newscasts each day. Rounding out the UNITY News team included photographers and editors Will Mosley, Lenape, and Miguel Bravo.
UNITY News is one way to help shape Native youth as storytellers. UNITY, under the direction of executive director Mary Kim Titla, a former TV News journalist, expanded its news network in 2014 with the production of mini-newscasts. The mini-news segments are shown daily during UNITY’s Midyear and National conferences. Every year, thanks to partners and mini-grants from various sponsors, UNITY continues to further its mission by empowering Native youth to explore the world of journalism and inspiring them to produce videos about issues or activities important to them. UNITY will once again hold virtual auditions to select next year’s UNITY News anchors and field reporters.
UNITY News also partnered with Urias Communications to give one youth on the job training behind the scenes of the largest Native youth gathering in the country. Miguel Bravo started his internship with Urias Communications at the beginning of the summer, right in the midst of planning for the National Conference. “With his phenomenal video editing skills, we knew we had to bring him with the team to Minneapolis to support UNITY Staff Will Mosley in all things video/photo production” shared Urias Coordinator Carmen De Albla Cardenas. “From the first day of the conference, Miguel was ready to learn and help, especially with UNITY News. Between Will and him, they produced four news segments as well as videos for 25 Under 25, NUC headshots and much more! We are so proud of the hard work and dedication that Miguel brought to the team and all he accomplished these last few months with us. He will take this newly gained experience with him as he begins his college journey at SDSU this Fall! “