Kimimila Locke, daughter of Dorothy Stickwan Locke, has been named a 2021 Bush Fellow (www.bushfoundation.org/news/introducing-2021-bush-fellows). She is one of 24 visionary leaders chosen for this $100k fellowship. The Bush Fellowship is an investment in individuals to develop the skills and relationships to drive large-scale change. The 2021 Fellows are addressing a wide variety of issues in communities around the region, and every one of them is seeking to be a greater force for equity and justice.
Kimimila Locke (Dakota, Ahtna Dené & Anishnaabe) is on a quest to radically improve educational outcomes for Lakota youth. Over the past two decades, she has embedded culture and community strengths in learning to help students achieve significant academic results. Now, with a group of committed colleagues, she has returned to Standing Rock to open a high school that embraces Lakota traditions. She seeks to create safe spaces that reconnect youth to their land and to the strengths of their culture. She also wants to expand this vision to other indigenous communities struggling with such issues as loss of language and sovereignty and economic inequality. To lead this large-scale change, she will study and learn from programs around the country and world that are successfully building indigenous sovereignty and revitalizing language and other traditions with youth.