Archive

Archive for the ‘Tribal’ Category

Chromebook Users of Rio Rancho

August 6, 2019 Leave a comment

I live in Rio Rancho, New Mexico and my kids attend the Rio Rancho Public Schools District.  One of the changes that have happened over the last couple of years in the district is the adoption of the Google Education infrastructure and the use of Chrombooks throughout all the schools.  I’ve seen investment in classrooms where teachers now have over 30 chromebooks to use for classroom instruction.

With these changes, what I have not seen is any general education for the students, siblings, or parents in the community (and surrounding tribal communities).  I decided to try and change that with the free resources available through the City of Rio Rancho.

I am a volunteer with the city and this enabled me to teach my Raspberry Pi classes in 2017 at the Loma Colorado Public Library.  This library has great resources … rooms, tables, chairs, laptops, monitors, keyboards, mice, and great internet bandwith!  So all I really needed to do was schedule and coordinate to get this new set of classes started.

One of the challenges in starting anything new is awareness, so I decided to use the Meetup.com to raise awareness.  The meetup group page is at:

https://www.meetup.com/Chromebook-Users-of-Rio-Rancho/

We had our first class/meetup on July 27, 2019 at the Loma Colorado Public Library Auditorium, I brought 12 Chromebooks for folks to use … we had 11 people attend, some hands on time, and many questions around the Chromebook and Google services.  I was excited about the attendance and am looking at holding this class once a month for now and maybe more frequent based on interest and demand.

I will be scheduling new meetups or classes via meetup.com so, keep an eye on this website for new events or check out to the library calendar.

– Dom

Winner winner NB3 plant based dinner!

April 25, 2019 Leave a comment

My son Kyle participated in the Notah Begay III (NB3) Foundation’s “Health Kids! Healthy Futures! Native American Youth App Contest”.  He teamed up with his friend Kaiya (who is homeschooled), to develop a mobile app idea targeted at Native Youth to help combat Type 2 Diabetes and Obesity.  Their mobile app design (previous blog post here) was selected for the final round and combined with a third applicant’s idea to incorporate exercise and meal information.  The three students then worked for another 6 weeks with a local software development company, 11 Online, to see their design become a reality and a minimum viable product (MVP) was created.  Kyle and Kaiya split the $1750 prize money with the third participant, a native high school student from Albuquerque.  Along with the award ceremony, we had a wonderful plant based dinner from ItalityNM.com from Jemez Pueblo, NM.

It was fun coaching Kyle and Kaiya through parts of the IBM Enterprise Design Thinking process to develop user desired outcomes to battle childhood Type 2 Diabetes and Obesity.  All the players worked hard to develop the Mobile App MVP … please take the time to look at the photo gallery below and small video showing the early modeling of the app.

Here is the Figma link that the video was made from (not sure how long this link will be good):

https://www.figma.com/file/Qz03jMJZHpwwMv2k8dE8uyYk/Trim-Tracker?node-id=0%3A1

Thanks again to the NB3 Foundation for creating a contest to challenge our native youth in the areas of design and software development!

– Dom

 

2017 New Mexico Tribal Gaming Summary and Contribution to the General Fund

April 8, 2018 Leave a comment

Here is a summary of tribal gaming in New Mexico for 2017 (gaming machines). The reports from the NM Gaming Control Board come out on a quarterly basis (and sometimes amended), and with a little spreadsheet work we can get the yearly picture.

Some highlights compared to 2016:

  • Nambe Pueblo gaming has effectively stopped operations in 2017
  • Pojoaque Pueblo has started contributing to the NM Tribal Gaming Net Win in 2017.
  • Total NM Tribal Gaming Net Win for 2016 is $708.7 million (up from $698.7 million)
  • Total Revenue share to NM general fund from Tribal Gaming Net Win is $61.5 million (up from $59 million)
  • Total NM Tribal Gaming Net Win is up $10 million (+1.4%) from 2016
  • Revenue share to NM general fund from Tribal Gaming Net Win is up $2.5 million (+4%) from 2016
  • Tribal Gaming Revenue share to NM general fund is about 1% of total NM FY17 budget
  • Average percent from Tribal Gaming Revenue to the State of NM is 8.46%

And one other interesting comparison …  All of the 2017 Tribal Infrastructure Awards from the State of New Mexico totaled $5.4 million …  So only about 8.7% of Tribal Gaming dollars to the State of New Mexico make it back into on reservation for tribal infrastructure.

 

Muhammad Ali memorial, my grandfather Homer Yahnozha, and the words of Chief Oren Lyons

June 11, 2016 Leave a comment

Muhammed Ali Memorial

I was in a Houston airport yesterday waiting for my next plane back to New Mexico after teaching a workshop in New York City and I caught the memorial service live broadcast on the local TV in the airport.

One of my vivid childhood memories of my grandfather Homer Yahnozha (Mescalero Apache) was that he very much loved to watch Boxing when it came on the TV in his house in Paguate, New Mexico.  Homer was a survivor of the Bataan Death March and from my perspective (as a child) he was unemotional most of the time I interacted with him, a likely result from his experiences in military combat, survival, and service for this country.  Boxing was one of the few times I saw his face light up in joy while two boxers went at one another.  I’m sure he watched Muhammad Ali a time or two and would have been sad at his passing.

It was heartwarming to see that Muhammad Ali had planned to have a Native American speak at his memorial, one in his Native Language of the Onondaga and the other in English.

The two individuals that spoke were Chief Sydney Hill and Chief Oren Lyons, in attendance on stage was Ernie Stevens, Jr.

I’d like to capture what was spoken by Chief Lyons here because of it’s meaning and that Muhammad Ali had the foresight to provide yet another global and world platform for the Native American community and Indigenous peoples.  I have yet to see a full transcript of what was said at the memorial.

I transcribed the words of Chief Oren Lyons here based on the video below:

“Translation (of the words Chief Sydney Hill just before) … He said, my relatives, it is my responsibility to pick up the words for the (native word of his community) the people of the longhouse, they wish you well, they want you to be at peace of mind.  

Now this great darkness that has happened to us, you must understand, that he who had gathered us here, that his road is straight, peacefully he will arrive at his land (native words) our creator.  

It is the same as you call him Allah, these were the words.  

To the family, relatives, and friends, of Muhammad Ali … Muhammad Ali was a leader among men, and a champion of the people.  He fought for the people of color, yet he was a man of peace and principles.  A man of compassion who used his great gifts for the common good.  

His spirit has a clear path to the creator.  (Native words) Sydney Hill, spiritual leader of the (native words) 6 Nation Iroquois Confederation Onondaga Nation, and myself (native name), faith-keeper, turtle clan, Onondaga Council Of Chiefs, have journeyed here today to add our voice to this congregation of world leaders, in honor of his work, and for the rights and dignity of people of color and the common man.  

He (Muhammad Ali) was always in support of the indigenous people of this hemisphere in our quest for our inherent land rights, self determination, identity, and collective rights that include the natural world.  

We know … we know what he was up against, because we’ve had 524 years of survival training ourselves.

In 1978 a congressman from the state of Washington put a bill into congress to terminate our treaties with the United States, and Indian Nations walked from California to Washington DC in protest.  Muhammad Ali marched into Washington DC with us.

He was a free independent spirit, he stood his ground with great courage and conviction, and he paid a price, and this country did too, we all did.  

Values and principles will determine one’s destiny and the principles of a nation will do the same.

Poor people do not have many options, you fighters know what I’m talking about.

He said that the ring was Ali’s path to destiny.  He said he’d be heavyweight champion of the world, and he was, 3 times, and this 4th time, right here right now.

On his journey in life, he lived and learned the hard way, he brought a life into this world, my world, our world, and that life will shine a long long time.

Peace brother, peace, and on behalf of the (native words referencing his community) my friend Ernie, and the indigenous people everywhere, peace, thank you, (native words of thanks).”

 

Here is the YouTube video this was based on:  https://youtu.be/CdLzviYQh70

Native American Parent Advisory Committee (NAPAC) at Rio Rancho Public Schools (RRPS)

February 8, 2015 Leave a comment

NAPAC

Adding a external link of the Native American Parent Advistory Committee (NAPAC) here to this page since it’s buried pretty deep on the Rio Rancho Public School website.

The Native American Parent group at Sandia Vista Elementary School (SVES) is organized now and we are working on getting a school fusion page up for our content.  Will keep you posted.

– Dom

 

Career day presentation at SVES

February 5, 2015 Leave a comment

This video was made from the slides and recorded audio from a presentation I gave to the 3rd, 4th, & 5th grade Montessori class at Sandia Vista Elementary School (SVES) in Rio Rancho, NM on 2/4/2015.  My oldest son is in this class.  Enjoy!

– Dom

 

Lessons Learned serving as a Laguna Development Corporation (LDC) Board of Directors Member

October 31, 2014 Leave a comment

It’s no secret that I’m on the Board of Directors of Laguna Development Corporation (it’s in my Bio here and on the company website, so it’s public).  I was appointed about 3 years ago this month by the Pueblo of Laguna tribal council based on my corporate experience and being a pueblo of laguna tribal member.  Since being appointed, I have seen and experienced quite a bit in the areas of gaming, hospitality, retail, and food & beverage.  Here are some lessons learned during this journey, in no particular order.  I will add to this list as more lessons come to mind.

  1. A Section 17 federal tribal corporation is a unique corporate entity, it is tribal community oriented.
  2. Non-tribal board members will likely struggle to understand the tribal perspective and way of life.
  3. Being an active and contributing board member will take more time than you think, more than 75% of my IBM vacation time off work went to being a board member.
  4. Corporate communication is hard to do well.
  5. Understanding sovereign immunity is fundamental and important.
  6. When $777,632 went missing in late 2014, it was a big deal.  Based on the cash share agreement this means the pueblo is out more than $500,000 for 2015.
  7. Tribal businesses seem to lack a “killer instinct” to dominate their market and be number one, they move forward very conservatively.
  8. Disappointment is part of having high standards of behavior and ethics.

Update … on January 31, 2015, my term expired and I am no longer on the Laguna Development Corporation Board Of Directors, long story.  I am grateful Laguna Pueblo gave me the opportunity to contribute back to my home community in the capacities I can.  I’m open and look forward to helping other tribes raise the bar and really compete in the business world off the rez.

– Dom

%d bloggers like this: