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1st Annual Little River Institute Indigenous Education Conference 

April 28-29, 2016

Featured speakers




Montana State University-Northern · P.O. Box 7751 · 300 13th St West · Havre, MT 59501 · 800.662.6132

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Angela McLean is a politician and educator from the state of Montana. She was the 31st Lieutenant Governor of Montana, an office she held from February 2014 to January 2016. McLean graduated from Twin Bridges High School and became the first person in her family to graduate college. She earned a bachelor's degree from the University of Montana Western and a master's degree in curriculum and instruction at the University of Montana.


McLean was chairwoman of the Montana Board of Regents from January 2012 to February 2014. She has also served on the Montana Board of Public Education. She taught American history and government at Anaconda High School. She has also taught as an adjunct professor at Montana Tech of the University of Montana.


Mandy Smoker Broaddus belongs to the Assiniboine and Sioux tribes of the Fort Peck Reservation in north-eastern Montana. She holds an MFA from the University of Montana in Missoula, where she was the recipient of the Richard Hugo Fellowship.  She is also a graduate of Pepperdine University, and attended UCLA and the University of Colorado, where she was a Battrick Fellow.


Smoker Broaddus currently works for the Office of Public Instruction as the Director of Indian Education.  She has spent the past seven years overseeing the work of statewide Indian Education for All Efforts and the Schools of Promise initiative, which seeks to turnaround the states lowest performing schools.   In 2015, she was named the Indian Educator of Year by the National Indian Education Association.


She was formerly an administrator in her home community of Frazer, Montana for three years. She has taught courses at Fort Peck Community College and the University of Montana.  She has published one collection of poems, Another Attempt at Rescue (Hanging Loose Press, 2005).  She has also served as a writer and consultant on the PBS documentaries Before There Were Parks and Indian Relay (which earned her a regional Emmy award).


Pearl Yellowman is a member of the Navajo Nation and currently providing services in State & Local Research Evaluation, Adolescent Prevention/Intervention Modalities, Native American Youth Leadership Development and Adult Professional Development in Cultural Studies and Poverty.


Pearl earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work, a Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership, a Master’s Degree in Counseling Education and a Doctorate of Education in Educational Leadership from University of Montana, in the Educational Leadership program focusing on the Contributing Factors of the Achievement Gap for Native American students.  Pearl resides in Polson, MT with her family.  Pearl’s traditional teachings include the Ho’zho’ which translates into the Navajo Beauty Way.


With 20 years of experience, Pearl provides prevention, intervention and postvention modalities specializing in American Indian youth and families, Pearl provides as array of individual, family and community development services in Health and Wellness.


Pearl serves as a national Native youth leadership development trainer, providing trainings in the area of Native youth wellness and leadership.  With over fifteen years of experience in education and counseling, Pearl started in school counseling and later provided behavioral health services to the “hard to reach” residents in the juvenile detention centers located on the Navajo Nation. The experience started an educational pathway that lead to her research on the achievement gap and its relationship to socio-economic behaviors.  Pearl has worked with grant programs such as the 21st Century  Community Learning Center, TRIO and, Character Education Program that provided an opportunity for her to work with tribal organizations and communities on issues that address improving the educational needs of Native students to teachers, administrators, school districts, and other organizations.


Most recently, Pearl has provided Professional Development opportunities and Keynotes addresses to organizations such as the Montana Office of Public Instruction, the Northwest Regional Indian Education Summit, Siksika Nation of Canada, United National Indian Tribal Youth Inc., and Montana State University Summer Institute Teacher Training, Oregon Indian Education Association, Wyoming Indian Education Association, and National Indian Education Association.  In addition, Pearl works with public school districts in Montana implementing Indian Education for All (IEFA) content material. She provides classroom lessons on meeting the Essential Understandings for IEFA, teacher trainings for implementation and district wide professional development on student achievement.

Dr. Manuelito-Kerkvliet's served as the first Native American woman President at an accredited university outside the tribal college system. During her tenure at Antioch University Seattle, new scholarships were established, including the Richard Norris Native American Scholarship and the AUS Board of Trustees Scholarship. New innovative programs include the Institute of War Stress Injuries and Social Justice, Drama Therapy, and Center for Teaching and Learning.


Prior to coming to Antioch University Seattle, Dr. Manuelito-Kerkvliet worked in a variety of student services and counseling positions at the University of Oregon, University of New Mexico, New Mexico State University, University of Wyoming and Montana State University. She serves on the Seattle Community Colleges Chancellor's Advisory Council. She has served as a member of the executive board of Washington State Campus Compact and the Board of Directors of the Higher Education Resource Services and the Washington Women's Foundation.


Dr. Manuelito-Kerkvliet is the living example of her great, great grandfather, Chief Manuelito's teaching: "Education is the ladder to success. Tell my grandchildren to climb that ladder."


Bio information from PR Newswire.


As a member of the “Apsaalooke Nation”, Supaman makes his home on the Crow reservation in Montana. Christian Takes the Gun Parrish, aka "Supaman," is a Native American dancer and hip hop artist who has dedicated his life to empowering youth and educating listeners with a message of hope through culture and music. Known for his tremendously powerful inspirational lyrics, he is in demand nationally with the purpose of spreading a positive message throughout Indian country and abroad.


In 2005 he won a (Nammy) The Native American Music Award for his group “Rezawrecktion” and has since released three self produced projects which have all received national recognition and awards including the 2011 North American Indigenous Image Award for outstanding hip hop album.

Christian’s presentation combines Native American culture, humor, and urban hip hop culture. He is a champion fancy dancer traveling extensively on the powwow circuit throughout the U.S and Canada and lives a drug and alcohol free life. He also is a champion clown dancer and a Native American Flute player, and a husband and father of three.

Supaman has worked with numerous programs and tribes to help promote self worth, build moral character, build a positive sense of native identity. He has implemented his presentations to address the issues that he has experienced and is very passionate about.



Denise Juneau has spent her adult life ensuring that all Montanans have access to a quality education that can open the doors to a better future. Her work in public schools and leading the state’s education agency has meant increased opportunities for Montanans, and a collective boost to the state’s economy.


Denise’s Montana roots run deep. Her family’s ancestry traces back to before Montana was even a state, possibly 54 generations on this soil. She attended Head Start in Billings while her parents worked their way through college. By 2nd grade, her family moved to Browning where Denise’s grandmother was a school cook and mother to eight children, her grandfather was a medal-awarded veteran, police officer and drove school buses, and her parents were educators. Denise’s first job was alongside her grandma in the school kitchen.


She experienced first-hand the value of education and public service and recognizes they can change the course of someone’s life.


After graduating from Browning High School, Denise received her bachelor’s degree in education from Montana State University. She continued her education and earned a master’s in English from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. After teaching in North Dakota and Montana and working at the state education agency, Denise set her sights on the legal profession and received her juris doctorate from The Law School at The University of Montana.


Denise is an enrolled member of the Mandan Hidatsa Tribes and a descendant of the Blackfeet tribe. In 2008, she became the first American Indian woman in the country ever elected to an executive statewide office. In 2012, she was reelected to a second term as Montana’s Superintendent of Public Instruction.


As Superintendent, Denise launched an unprecedented effort to make sure all Montana students who graduate from high school are prepared for college or military and civilian careers. She developed a statewide initiative, Graduation Matters Montana, which has made a positive difference in more than 50 communities. Graduation Matters Montana brings school, business leaders, community members, students and families together to work toward a common goal – that every student graduates from high school ready to succeed. Since the start of Graduation Matters, Montana’s graduation rate has increased to its highest level ever recorded.


Denise’s parents, Stan and Carol Juneau live in Great Falls. Her brother, Ron, lives and works in Billings with his family.

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