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© 2013-2014



2014 marks the 4th Annual Young Native Women's Leadership Academy. 

Native Action Network is proud to announce our fourth annual 2014 Young Native Women’s Leadership Academy, “Declaring our Power, Defining our Future.”  This Leadership Conference is designed to empower young women as they continue their journey to become leaders of their community.  Through hands-on training, participants will learn how to advocate for an issue and inspire positive change. 


In 2010, the inaugural class was represented by 26 young Native women from 19 different tribal communities. Through three days of training, they actively participated in eleven workshops that were designed to strengthen their understanding of money, popular media, personal development, goal setting, leadership, tribal sovereignty, Indian law, networking, and self-expression. At the end of the Academy the women left empowered, engaged, and prepared to reach their goals for Indian Country. 




Native women have, and always will hold a strong, proud, and respected role in traditional Native communities. Native women are bearers of a sacred spirit and hold responsibility as nurturers, teachers, leaders, and warriors to their people and community. As modern society and culture provide distraction and disconnect from traditional values for many young Native women, it becomes imperative to declare and celebrate their true power.  In doing so, these young women must also be prepared with the tools they need to claim their sacred and inherent role as leaders in our communities as they define their future.


Today, over 65% of the Native population is under 25 years old. In this rising generation, Native women are preparing to take lead of Native communities, cultures, and current issues. As a community, we must unite together behind our youth as they prepare to lead Native people to new heights and accomplishments. Every day, important decisions are being made by our tribal council, local business leaders, or community elders. These decisions affect us all, and young Native women have the power to be a part of the decision making process and have their voice heard. Today, we declare their power.  


By joining forces with respected community and national experts, the Native Action Network’s Young Native Women’s Leadership Academy hopes to prepare the next generation of women Native leaders by combining cultural values with modern tools and services. The Youth Academy will include a full day of challenging and invigorating leadership training. We will encourage our young women attendees to push their minds and spirits to new limits through debate and discussion with their peers under the guidance and instruction of honored elders and guests specialized in their fields. Through key presentations combined with hands on team activities, young women will leave transformed, empowered, and prepared to make a positive difference in their communities. Today, we define their futures. 


The journey continues long after the gathering, as graduates of the Native Action Network Leadership Academy will be welcomed into an elite and connected alumni network with the tools to propel graduates to reach their newly defined goals. With each conference our network will expand, providing endless opportunities to network, explore career and educational interests, and share goals with a community of powerful and amazing Native women leaders. 




•Define participant’s goals for the Native community

•Address and uncover issues affecting our Native community and discuss ways to address them

•Further participant’s professional development

•Enhance participant’s skills while developing new ones

•Continue to expand an established network of Native women leaders




The 2014 Leadership Academy will take place April 17-19,  2014 at the Great Wolf Lodge. There will be no cost to students for all lodging, meals, and needed materials during the Leadership Academy. Students are responsible for their own transportation to and from the Leadership Academy. All women will be assisted by chaperones throughout their stay. 




We encourage young Native women who are seniors in high school through their final year in college/university to apply. Applications will be judged on the applicant’s potential for leadership and commitment to Native service, as reflected in her application. 




Applications are still being accepted. To fill out an electronic application visit, visit

Marisa Quinn, from "Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2" will join us for the Youth Recognition breakfast as a keynote speaker!

Breaking News! Marisa Quinn will join us for the Youth Recognition breakfast as a keynote speaker! A dedicated performer, visual artist, & creative producer, Marisa can currently be seen worldwide as “Huilen” – a pivotal character in the highly anticipated finale of The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2. She is proud to be an enrolled member of the Lipan Apache Tribe of Texas, and a graduate of both the esteemed Brown University and the National Theater Institute. She has worked professionally in film & television portraying memorable characters on hit shows like Criminal Minds, Castle, Private Practice and Sons of Anarchy.Marisa’s dedication to creating opportunities for artistic expression in Film, Television, and New Media inspired her to establish Monarch Media Productions, an organization committed to generating innovative content which challenges stereotypes and promotes diversity.Monarch Media Productions’ first major project, Sweet Mary & Jane, allowed Marisa the collaborative experience of co-producing, co-creating and co-starring in this award-winning comedic film.