In this presentation, the speaker will provide an overview of Native American history through the perception of dominant culture. Starting with the 1700s to the present, participants will learn the history of false narratives and "marketing" of Indigenous peoples and how this has contributed to current disparities and inequities. Participants will also have an opportunity to learn about modern Native Americans and current efforts to shift the narrative from deficit to one of strength.
Executive Director of Tribal State Relations for the State of Minnesota
Patina Park is Mnicoujou Lakota. Her biological family comes from the Cheyenne River and Standing Rock Sioux Tribes; her adoptive family is Osage. Over the past 20 years, Ms. Park has worked in the Native community, both with tribal governments and urban communities. In March 2020, she was appointed Director of Tribal State Relations Systems Implementation for the State of Minnesota by Governor Walz and was tasked with implementing Executive Order 19-24 affirming the Government-to-Government relationship between the State and the 11 Sovereign Tribal Nations. However, 4 days into the new position, COVID-19 hit the State, the Governor issued Executive Order 20-01 Declaring a Peacetime Emergency, and Ms. Park’s work pivoted from implementation of EO 19-24 to serving as lead contact for the COVID response between the Governor’s office and the 11 Sovereign Tribal Nations.
On September 1, 2022, Ms. Park was promoted to Executive Director of Tribal State Relations, a newly elevated, stand-alone department within the Governor’s Office. She will continue to serve as a direct link between the Office of the Governor and Lieutenant Governor and Minnesota’s eleven tribal nations and tribal communities, as well serving as a senior advisor to the Governor and Lt. Governor on tribal affairs.
Ms. Park also serves as faculty for the Falmouth Institute for the past 10 years and facilitates comprehensive training and consulting nationwide to tribal and federal government representatives on issues that impact Indian Country, including Sovereignty, Federal Indian Law, Governance and Constitutions. Because of her own experiences as an adoptee, Ms. Park is passionate about issues related to Native American children and families and has led training sessions nationwide related to ICWA, historical trauma, and implementing trauma-informed, culturally responsive programming. She was approved by the United States Department of Interior University from 2015 through 2019 to provide tribal consultation and ISDEA training to federal agencies and facilitated numerous sessions across the country with agencies throughout the Department of Interior. Upon graduating from Hamline University Law School in 2001, Ms. Park focused her early legal career on advocating for Native American families involved in Indian Child Welfare Act cases in state and tribal courts across Minnesota. She also served as an appellate court judge for the Prairie Island Sioux Community, taught Federal Indian Law at the former Hamline University School of Law, now Mitchell Hamline School of Law, and held leadership positions with the Minnesota Indian Women’s Resource Center, Minneapolis Division of Indian Work, and the Ho-Chunk Nation Department of Justice.
Ms. Park has been married for 21 years to a St. Paul police officer and has 3 beautiful boys aged 25, 19, and 17, two cats, and a really naughty dog.
The opinions expressed during the Learning Café are solely those of the guest speaker and are not the view of the Early Care & Learning Council.
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Early Care & Learning Council (ECLC) is a statewide, not-for-profit membership organization that represents the 35 Child Care Resource & Referral (CCR&Rs) programs across New York State. The CCR&Rs are on the front lines, providing direct assistance and support to parents, child care providers, and employers in their communities.
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