Partner News

American Indian College Fund Promotes Emily White Hat to Vice President, Programs

Denver, Colo., September 24, 2019 — The American Indian College Fund has promoted Emily R. White Hat, J.D. to the position of Vice President, Programs. In her role as Vice President White Hat will support tribal colleges and universities to develop and implement projects and assists in capacity building to strengthen educational opportunities for Native students.

White Hat, who is a citizen of the Sicangu Lakota from the Aske Gluwipi Tiospaye and whose Lakota name is Nape Waste Win or “Good Hand Woman,” was born in Rosebud and grew up in St. Francis, South Dakota.

White Hat’s experience as a former firefighter, emergency medical Emily White Hattechnician, policy researcher, evaluator, and legal background have been vital to her work in program development and implementation, strategic planning, national outreach, qualitative research, writing, curriculum implementation, and evaluation with tribal nations and colleges using a capacity-building approach. She earned a J.D. and natural resources law certificate from the University of New Mexico School of Law. She also earned a bachelor’s degree in forestry with a concentration in fire science and a minor in rangeland ecology from Colorado State University, and an associate of arts degree in Lakota history and culture from Sinte Gleska University, a tribal university located on her home reservation.

In 2015, Emily was recognized by the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development as one of the “Native American 40 Under 40” award recipients. Emily currently serves as a board member for the Thunder Valley Community Development Corporation in Porcupine, South Dakota, a Lakota organization focused on creating systemic change through regenerative community development.

About the American Indian College Fund—Founded in 1989, the American Indian College Fund has been the nation’s largest charity supporting Native higher education for 30 years. The College Fund believes “Education is the answer” and provided 5,896 scholarships last year totaling $7.65 million to American Indian students, with more than 131,000 scholarships and community support totaling over $200 million since its inception. The College Fund also supports a variety of academic and support programs at the nation’s 35 accredited tribal colleges and universities, which are located on or near Indian reservations, ensuring students have the tools to graduate and succeed in their careers. The College Fund consistently receives top ratings from independent charity evaluators and is one of the nation’s top 100 charities named to the Better Business Bureau’s Wise Giving Alliance.

For more information about the American Indian College Fund, please visit

AISES Joins the US Census 2020 Urban Indian Leadership Circle in the State of Colorado

by Emerald Craig

Toya Census

The American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES) began in 1977 with a vision for the next seven generations of Native people to be successful, respected, influential, and contributing members of our vast and ever-changing global community. The success of Native people is not solely represented by one organization, group, or society, but through the support of each other, we see that success.

One partnership AISES will be profoundly engaging over the next year is with representatives from the State of Colorado and the U.S. Census 2020 because the Decennial Census is happening in April 2020. The success of the U.S. Census can mean many things for Indian country in addition to population counts. The U.S. Census data influences how congressional seats are allocated, how federal money is distributed for programs like healthcare, housing and education, and where businesses will plan and build new stores.

The U.S. Census hosted the first Urban Indian Leadership Circle in Colorado in May 2019 in Denver, Colorado. AISES Director of Marketing and Communication Montoya Whiteman joined close to 30 American Indian and Alaska Native leaders who were certified as tribal partners, and to begin AISES’ role in assisting in outreach and support in reaching a successful 2020 U.S. Census. In the upcoming months, you will start to see U.S. Census 2020 information on the AISES website, in the Winds of Change magazine, Paths to Opportunities newsletters, and more.

The Native American Rights Fund along with former Zia Tribal Chairman and Census Tribal Coordinator for 12 states, and 19 tribes, Amadeo Shije, are leading the effort in Indian country for the U.S. Census 2020 with the campaign “Natives Count.” By visiting, you too can join the effort in keeping Indian country successful whether it is being hired for a job such as a census taker, recruiting assistant, office staff, and supervisory staff. Additional resources on how you can volunteer are also available at

Join the Natives Count effort at and download the flyer to inform your community!