Grand Rapids, Minn. — Twenty-four residents of the Bois Forte, Fond du Lac and Grand Portage reservation communities completed a five-day leadership retreat November 8. This was the first segment of an intense seven-day training provided by the Blandin Reservation Community Leadership Program (BRCLP). The team also will participate in follow-up workshops.
A program of the Grand Rapids-based Blandin Foundation, BRCLP has provided experiential leadership training for more than 500 community leaders from 11 Minnesota American Indian Reservations since 2001. This is the eighth time these communities have participated together in the BRCLP leadership program.
Participants who completed the retreat were:
Monica Ares, Dan Buckanaga, Cassidy Capriglione, Michael Dahmen, Jeroam DeFoe, Allydia Diver, Beth Drost, Jacob Dunlap, Shandelle Friedman, Nenaaw Giizhig Smith, Brook LaFloe, Angela Lien, Bessie Medicine, Bill Myers, Adikoons Olson, Mark Pero, Monica Porter, Indalecio Romero, Dan Soulier, Tom Spears, Steven StandingCloud, Sidra Starkovich, Derek Strong and Mallory Towle.
The goal of the Blandin Reservation Community Leadership Program is to strengthen leadership capacity through cultural strengths and assets to build and sustain healthy tribal communities. Topics covered during the retreat included: acknowledging and drawing upon leadership strengths, recognizing and tapping into sources of personal and community resilience, framing community issues and opportunities, building social capital, and mobilizing community resources.
“A healthy community depends on leadership engagement of many community members,” said Valerie Shangreaux, director of Blandin leadership programs. “The leadership demonstrated by these participants reflects their deep commitment to their communities, their reservations, and the people living there.”
BRCLP training programs are funded entirely by the Blandin Foundation.
Photo caption: Blandin Reservation Community Leadership Program – Bois Forte, Fond du Lac and Grand Portage communities
Participants in BRCLP training November 4 – 8 included:
Back Row: (left to right)– Bill Mease (Trainer), Sidra Starkovich, Shandelle Friedman, Monica Ares, Cassidy Capriglione, Adikoons Olson, Nenaaw Giizhig Smith, and Beth Drost
Middle Row: (left to right)– Jacob Dunlap, Steven StandingCloud, Derek Strong, Bessie Medicine, Monica Porter, Angela Lien, Mallory Towle, Dan Soulier, Rick Smith (Trainer), and Roxanne DeLille (Trainer)
Front Row: (left to right)– Brook LaFloe, Tom Spears, Allydia Diver, Jeroam DeFoe, Dan Buckanaga Indalecio Romero, Mark Pero, Michael Dahmen, and Bill Myers