October 26-28, 2009 | Phoenix, AZ


Keynote Speaker: Jon Reyhner
Northern Arizona University

Jon Reyhner is a Professor of Bilingual Multicultural Education at Northern Arizona University. He taught and was a school administrator in schools serving American Indians for over a decade. He has written extensively on American Indian education and Indigenous language revitalization and served as a commissioned author for the Indian Nations at Risk Task Force. His most recent books are Indigenous Language Revitalization, Education and Language Restoration and American Indian Education: A History. He has edited seven books on Indian education, written over forty book chapters and articles and has given over a hundred workshops, presentations, and speeches at regional, national and international conferences.

Ken Gordon
Potlatch Fund

Ken Gordon moved to Seattle in 2005 following a distinguished career in philanthropy, teaching and public service in New Zealand. Prior to moving to Seattle, he was the Chief Executive of Trust Waikato, a large philanthropic trust with an $8 million annual grant budget. Organizations of all sizes both in the for-profit and not-for-profit world have benefited from his leadership in strategic planning, organizational refocusing, fundraising and community development. In 2006 Ken was appointed Executive Director of Potlatch Fund, a Native American Foundation and Leadership Development organization in Seattle. Ken is also a Board Member of the Chief Seattle Club and Duwamish Tribal Services Inc.

Freddie Johnson
Cultural Specialist, Phoenix Indian Center

Robert Schmidt
Blue Corn Comics, PECHANGA.net

Robert Schmidt is a Los Angeles-based writer/editor and publisher of Blue Corn Comics. He works for PECHANGA.net, the Internet news source, and has written extensively for the Native media. Schmidt maintains his BlueCornComics.com website and blogs on Indians in pop culture (Newspaper Rock) and Native language preservation (Pictographs). One of his projects is to produce comic books to help strengthen Native cultures and languages. Robert will present on innovative strategies for engaging youth in the project of language preservation.

Kara and Don Thornton
Thornton Media, Inc.

"Thornton Media, Inc. creates custom hi-tech tools to help save endangered indigenous languages. TMI can program Nintendo DSi consoles or iPod Touch/iPhone Applications to teach any endangered language. They have worked with over 115 American Indian tribes and Canadian First Nations creating custom language tools. TMI is the only language tool company in the world devoted specifically to Native languages." Don has been referred to by the Native American Times as Indian Country's “hi-tech guru”.


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