Native Power Building Fellowship

Background: The Native Power Building Fellowship is an 18-month Fellowship that will bring together a cohort of Native leaders that are committed to building power in Native communities in California. 

 The Fellowship will bring together fellows from across California to build relationships; participate in leadership development programming, including an Indigenized version of Rockwood Leadership Institute’s Art of Leadership; Coaching for Equity and Transformation; transformational organizing; and integrated voter engagement, including organizing and base building; and sharpen their practice of creating change in their communities.  

 Each fellow will also be asked to launch and/or support a campaign in their community that advances justice for Native peoples. Online and in-person gatherings will be a requirement for applicants, as well as a request to be part of an alumni network that will be built and grown over time. 


 Fellowship Requirements


Fellows will convene in person at least twice over the course of the fellowship to receive leadership development training. The first training will be a 5-day in person training to take place in Southern California in November 2022. The second training will take place in Northern California in Spring 2023. Travel costs and accommodation will be provided to participants. Fellows are expected to attend the full length of both trainings, and should factor their availability into their decision to apply.  


Fellows will convene virtually several times over the course of the fellowship. The first meeting will consist of a relationship building meeting and orientation to the fellowship. A handful of additional meetings will be held according to the needs of the cohort. 


Fellows will be asked to either develop or join an existing issue campaign in their community. Fellows will receive training and support on all aspects of campaign planning, implementation and evaluation. 


A reflection report will be required to submit after each in-person training, as well as at the end of the program.


Fellows will be invited to participate in an emergent statewide alumni network upon successful completion of their program.  


The fellowship is designed for Native Peoples that are early or in the middle of their social justice journey. We are seeking applicants with between three to ten years working towards justice and self-determination for Native peoples within an organization or association. This may include a formal paid position within a Native organization, a volunteer position within a non-formal grassroots association, a role within a college or university program, and/or any other similar experience.

Applications are due Friday, August 19 at 5 p.m. PST. 

Please submit your application here.

 Please send any questions to 

The featured artwork is a collaborative original artwork created for the “We the Resilient” report to communicate the resilience of Native peoples in California. Artist Ernesto Yerena (Yaqui and Chicano) created this print based on a photograph taken by fine artist photographer Cara Romero (Chemehuevi Indian Tribe). The image features Kiyanni, a Chemehuevi and Navajo youth leader.

Los Angeles ATI Office Listening Sessions

Long term community economic disinvestment has disproportionately impacted communities of color in LA County for far too long. The Care First Community Investment (CFCI) Committee wants to reinvest and transform LA County and achieve equity for all residents. Become a partner in this effort and attend a listening session to collaborate on how $100 million in funds are allocated.

They will be hosting 3 in-person listening sessions and 2 virtual sessions hosted by Zoom. Stay tuned for when additional in-person listening sessions are scheduled. The details of each event and listed below.

Please register for the nearest in-person or virtual listening session by visiting CFCI’s website.


  • Capacity is limited for in-person listening sessions
  • Complimentary food & beverages will be provided at in-person listening sessions

Listening Sessions (in-person)

  • Boyle Heights – April 26th 
    • Puente Learning Center – 501 S. Boyle Ave., LA CA 90033
    • When: Resource Fair: 6 – 7pm, Listening Session: 7 – 9pm
  • South LA – April 27th 
    • Progressive Community Missionary Baptist Church – 12416 S. Wilmington Ave., Compton, CA 90222
    • When: 5 – 7pm
  • Antelope Valley – April 30th 
    • Paving the Way Foundation – 44818 Fern Ave., Suite 105, Lancaster, CA 93534, USA
    • When: 11 am – 1pm

Listening Sessions (virtual)

Registration links are here, along with more information.

Spring Break Announcement

Our virtual offices will be closed for the week of March 28th through April 1st. Our team is taking the week off to rest, reflect, and recharge. We encourage you to take some time and practice rest along with us. We look forward to returning on Monday, April 4th. Please continue to remain safe by wearing a mask, washing your hands, and practicing social distancing.

CA Indian Education Act – Take Action

The California Native Vote Project and our listed Native, Indigenous, and non-Native allies and partners ask your committee to pass this historic bill as we correct the history of our state, and fully acknowledge the living Native and Indigenous peoples who have cared for and lived on these lands since time immemorial, and continue to contribute to California every day.

Native Powerbuilding Summit 2022

Join CNVP, tribal leaders, elders, and community members May 14, 2022, from 11 AM to 2:30 PM as we continue to build Native Power in California. We will hear more about AB 1703, the California Indian Education Act, and the importance of voting in the Primary Election on June 7th.

Join us as we build relationships with Natives across California!

Special guest speakers:

James Ramos  – California Assemblymember, author of AB1703 California Indian Education Act, and a proven civic leader and has served on numerous boards and organizations in the Inland Empire. He is the immediate past Chairman of the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians, with a deep commitment to the preservation of California Indian culture. Additionally, Ramos is co-founder of the San Manuel Band’s Cultural Awareness Program, and serves as director of the California Indian Cultural Awareness Conference held annually at California State University, San Bernardino.


Lyla June –  Indigenous musician, scholar and community organizer of Diné (Navajo), Tsétsêhéstâhese (Cheyenne) and European lineages. Her dynamic, multi-genre presentation style has engaged audiences across the globe towards personal, collective and ecological healing. She blends studies in Human Ecology at Stanford, graduate work in Indigenous Pedagogy, and the traditional worldview she grew up with to inform her music, perspectives and solutions. She is currently pursuing her doctoral degree, focusing on Indigenous food systems revitalization.


– Performances by DJ Daniel French (Mohawk)

– Raffle prizes

Contact Joey Williams at California Native Vote Project for more details at

Centering Voices in Mental Health Event

The LA County Board of Supervisors and Youth Commission will be hosting “Centering Voices in Mental Health” as an online event Thursday, February 10th, 2022, from 6 PM-7 PM PST.

Symptoms of depression and anxiety have doubled over the past two years for youth in this county since the pandemic. Community members, youth, agency partners, and community-based organizations would like to learn more about how to center lived experience and voices of youth while responding to mental health crises hitting youth in L.A. County.

Co-Sponsored by Fourth District Supervisor Janice Hahn’s office, this event is in response to a 2004 Board Motion and is designed to center the voices of young people with lived experience, who are all too often left out of the design of programs meant to support them.

“It is imperative that when we consider a path forward in helping LA County’s youth recover from the pandemic, we include them in building solutions. By convening mental health leaders and advocates, the Youth Commission is helping return authority to LA County’s youth in healing their communities.” said Hahn.

“The Department of Mental Health is deeply committed to the wellbeing of youth in LA County” said DMH Director Dr. Jonathan Sherin, M.D., Ph.D. “We are thrilled to partner with the Youth Commission, which is positioned to help amplify the voices of young people who have never had a proper platform for providing input to County systems. It is our belief that the Youth Commission will inspire new and more effective models of mental health care for young people in LA County.”

To RSVP for the event, please click here.

You can also RSVP by calling +1213-633-5599
or emailing

For more information, please click here.

Indigenous and Black Solidarity against Police Brutality

Policing, politics, and pandemics

The police murder of George Floyd at the hands of the Minneapolis Police Department was an outrageous violation of human rights which must result in the prosecution of all the officers involved. The civil unrest which righteously followed was a result of the city of Minneapolis’ inadequate response to the actions of its officers as an entity charged with the protection of all of its residents. Across America, Black teenagers, college students, city councilmen, congressmen and residents of all walks of life have shared detailed accounts of the realities of police violence as a daily repeated reality. In America today, we know that being Black is sufficient for police to justify violence as they represent an unfounded threat based in racism.

The Minneapolis Police Department’s violence against American Indians in many ways also gave birth to the American Indian Movement in the ‘60’s. According to the Metropolitan Urban Indian Directors Group (MUID) — a collaborative of some thirty American Indian organizations operating within the Twin Cities metropolitan area of Minnesota, “The American Indian Movement was founded in Minneapolis in 1968 as a direct response to unchecked brutality being perpetrated by the Minneapolis Police Department upon our community members”.

We stand in solidarity with the African American community, as Peoples who have also experienced violent and structural oppression at the hands of the settler state.

Community leaders are calling for meaningful dialogue and elders are laying down prayers. Escalating police presence and ongoing racist ideologies in police departments across the country is not the solution. Therefore, we demand additional community action and organizing to create an authentic dialogue to address the root causes of police violence against black, brown, and indigenous communities.

This morning we awoke again to the reality of police violence in what is fast becoming the clear trappings of an authoritarian state which is only the latest manifestation of a long history of colonization, genocide and violence of the country against Indigenous peoples. At the border, Indigenous children are incarcerated and cast out, across LA, fathers, sons, and brothers have been beaten and shot to death and the Sheriff remains lawless.

And in Minneapolis, buildings burn.

As a result of the current unrest, a local American Indian education center in Minneapolis, called MIGIZE, Anishinabe for Eagle, was burnt down as well.

We’ve seen this all before. We’ve lived it.

Indigenous Peoples and tribal members of sovereign American Indian nations here in California also include African American family members. In Los Angeles, being Black or Brown is also often enough to be dehumanized and criminalized by local police and sheriffs. Police brutality is part of a larger issue of domination, oppression, and colonization in this country. State violence is in the DNA of the founding of this country, state, and city.

Today, we call for continental solidarity with African American communities in Minneapolis, St. Paul, and here in Los Angeles.

We express our love and kinship with our own African American relatives and call for exhaustive measures to be taken to change the culture and purpose of all police departments.

In the new normal, we cannot accept any use of public institutional violence against us. We need to reimagine the role of law enforcement in US society, one that is guided by creating and championing peace and service to all communities.

In solidarity with our relatives and partners in the Twin Cities metropolitan area of Minnesota, we call for the swift and vigorous prosecution of the four offending (and now terminated) officers complicit in this murder to the fullest extent of the law.

We stand with the African American community, and all other communities regularly targeted for violence by police and sheriff’s departments across the country.

We demand community-based recommendations be implemented without delay in Minneapolis, Los Angeles and across the country. We also demand that more strategies be developed and implemented to properly protect Black, Brown and Indigenous people from the police forces our tax dollars, cities, and towns subsidize, especially as the City of Los Angeles plans to expend additional funds on policing instead of community-building, housing, and education.

As Indigenous Peoples and their allies, we stand in solidarity with all oppressed people in what is currently called the United States, and we call for immediate systemic change with unity, justice and dignity.

We offer our kinship, prayers and commitment from Tovaangar and Tatavium territories (the Los Angeles basin and So. Channel Islands). As a coalition of Indigenous Peoples we pay our respects to the Honuukvetam (Ancestors), ‘Ahiihirom (Elders) and ‘Eyoohiinkem (our relatives/relations) past, present and emerging.

In solidarity,

Chrissie Castro (Diné, Chicana), Chairperson, Los Angeles City/County Native American Indian Commission, Co-founder, California Native Vote Project

Rudy J. Ortega, Jr., Tribal President, Fernandeño Tataviam Band of Mission Indians

Marcos Aguilar & Minnie Ferguson, (Masewali Mexicano), Letter Co-author, Semillas del Pueblo -Anahuacalmecac World School

Salomon Zavala (Nahua Chicano), Ollin Law, Letter Co-author

Dr. Shannon Speed (Chickasaw), UCLA American Indian Studies Center, Letter Co-author

Celestina Castillo (Tohono O’odham/Chicana), Executive Director, California Native Vote Project

Andrea N. Garcia, MD (Mandan, Hidatsa, Arikara), Commissioner, Los Angeles City/County Native American Indian Commission, Project Scientist, Department of Psychiatry, David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA

Cynthia M Ruiz (Cherokee Citizen), Tsa-La-Gi LA Council member

Joseph Berra, Human Rights in the Americas Project Director, Human Rights in Action Clinic UCLA Law

Heather Rae, IllumiNative

Felicia Montes & Maria Villamil, Mujeres de Maíz

Odilia Romero (Zapoteca), Frente Indígena de Organizaciones Binacionales (FIOB), Comunidades Indígenas en Liderazgo (CIELO)

Gaspar Rivera-Salgado (Mixteco), Frente Indígena de Organizaciones Binacionales (FIOB)

George Funmaker (Ho-Chunk/Dakota), Red Earth Defense

Policarpo Chan (Maya Quiche), Maya Vision and Mayan Community of LA

Monique Castro (Diné, Chicana), CEO/Founder, Indigenous Circle of Wellness, Co-founder, California Native Vote Project

R. Tolteka Cuauhtin (Xicano Nahua), Save CA Ethnic Studies Coalition

Javier Ramirez (Lenca Poton, Nawat, Pipil), David Escobar (Lenca Poton), Scott Scoggins (Nawat, Pipil) Kuxkatan Indigenous Collective CCNIS, Diáspora representatives

Lydia Ponce (Mayo/Quechua/Scottish), American Indian Movement

Mati Waiya (Chumash, Chichimeca, Nuu-chah-nulth), Executive Director, Wishtoyo Chumash Foundation

Sylvia Gonzales-Youngblood (Ohlone/Costanoan Rumsen|Mexican), Advocate/Activist/Community Leader, Co-Founder|So Cal Administrator, Community Advisory Leadership Collaborative

Alma Marquez, La Comadre Organization

Joel Garcia (Huichol), Meztli Projects

Roberto Flores, Eastside Café

El Sereno Community Land Trust

Jason Erik Reed (African-American/Cherokee), Los Angeles Community Member

Ernesto Tlahuitollini Colín (Mexica/P’uréhpecha), Trustee, Anahuacalmecac World School, Associate Professor, Loyola Marymount University

Gypsy Ayala (Nahua Chicana), Trustee, Anahuacalmecac World School

Edmundo Perez (Macuiltianguis Zapoteca), Trustee, Anahuacalmecac World School

Tino Torres (Chiende Warm Springs Apache New Mexico), Xikano Nation East L.A. California

Bethany Yellowtail (Northern Cheyenne, Crow), Founder/Designer, B.Yellowtail

Tazbah Rose Chavez (Nüümü, Dinè, San Carlos Apache), Poet / Writer / Director

Joey Montoya (Lipan Apache), CEO, Urban Native Era

Shannon Rivers (Akimel O’otham), American Indian Cultural Advisor: Indian Health Center, Santa Clara Valley, Native American Spiritual Leader: for State, Federal, Private and Tribal Correctional Facilities in Arizona and California

N. Bird Runningwater (Cheyenne/Mescalero Apache), Sundance Institute

For more information:

MUIDMN Statement