“My name given to me by my maternal grandmother is i?pax’paxt. She named me “one who is smart” because I’m her only grandchild that furthered my education. My two Nations are Okanogan and Colville. My mother is Colville and my father is Similkameen/Okanogan. I received my Bachelor of Arts through the University of British Columbia, majoring in Indigenous Studies. I was fortunate enough to be published five times during my time obtaining my Bachelor Degree where I wrote about the importance of traditional knowledge and passing that down to our people to be.
I then moved south of the 49th Parallel to do mental and behavioral health research for the Colville Tribes and the Empire Health Foundation; also qualitative and quantitative research for the Native American Research Centers for Health through NIDA. I was then sent to the University of Oregon to pursue a Master of Education majoring in Prevention Science to bring those tools back to my people. I brought these tools I’ve gathered thus far to the Seattle Indian Health Board to work in the Traditional Indian Medicine department to deliver culturally appropriate services to the urban population of the Seattle area.
I am also assisting the University of Washington, the Colville Tribes, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation with culturally adapting Attachment Vitamins to deliver to the Colville tribal parents. I’ve started a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing through the Institute for American Indian Artists as well. Being fortunate to grow up alongside our Nation’s spiritual leaders and in our longhouses, I am able to carry with me on all my journeys our Traditional Knowledge and Protocols so I know how to best approach whatever may come to me. Witnessing the events thus far around us, I am so fortunate and forever grateful to my Traditional Knowledge Mentors for trusting me with our teachings and our unwritten laws.”