White House Officials Confer on Endangered Languages

On Friday, June 13, President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama paid their first visit to Indian Country since the campaigns, attending the powwow at Cannon Ball, ND on the Standing Rock Indian Reservation.

SRST Chairman Dave Archambault and President Barack Obama, June 13, 2014

The visit occurred during the Lakota Summer Institute, happening just 20 miles south in Fort Yates, ND, at Sitting Bull College.  Officials of the White House Initiative on American Indian and Alaska Native Education (WHIAIANE) came to Sitting Bull the next day, Saturday June 14 …

L-R: Jan Ullrich, Sunshine Carlow, William Mendoza, Ron Lessard, Wil Meya, Kim Campbell

… for a roundtable discussion on the preservation of Native American languages and their importance in education.

Roundtable on Native American language preservation, June 14, 2014, Sitting Bull College, Fort Yates ND, Standing Rock Indian Reservation.

Dignitaries meeting at Sitting Bull College included US Secretary of the Interior Sally JewellWilliam Mendoza (Executive Director of the White House Initiative on American Indian and Alaska Native Education ), Sedelta Oosahwee (Associate Director of WHIAIANE)  and Ron Lessard (Chief of Staff at WHIAIANE).

US Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell
William Mendoza
Ron Lessard
Sedelta Oosahwee

Welcoming them were Sitting Bull President Dr. Laurel Vermillion, Sitting Bull’s VP of Academics Koreen Ressler, Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Chairman Dave Archambault, SRST Education Manager Sunshine Carlow, joined by LLC Staff Wil Meya, Jan Ullrich and Kim Campbell, as well as many Lakota Native speakers and teachers.

L-R: Dr. Laurel Vermillion, Sec. Jewell, VP Academics Koreen Ressler
Ron Lessard and Dr. Vermillion
L-R: Sec. Jewell, SRST Chairman Dave Archambault, elder speaker Ben Black Bear, Jr.


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