As your Congresswoman, one of my main priorities will continue partnerships and collaboration to support Native communities. My work will be grounded with respect for tribal sovereignty, governance, consultation and self-determination.
While in the Montana Senate, it was an honor to work in partnership with a strong delegation of Native colleagues. Throughout my public service, I have worked in collaboration with leaders of Native-led nonprofits, tribal colleges, tribal governments and Native businesses across our region. I have learned the importance of moving “shovel-ready” projects forward by supporting access to capital by private investors and banks, as well as with loans from community development financial institutions, and the underwriting of state and federal programs and foundations. Those types of investments are support entrepreneurship opportunities, healthcare and assisted living facilities for elders and other critical needs in Indian country.
As an example, the Northwest Area Foundation (NWAF), of which I serve a Vice-Chair of the board of directors recently launched a $5 million funding collaboration with the Federal Home Loan Bank (FHLB) of Des Moines to support the groundbreaking work of Native Community Development Foundation Institutions. This investment will help grow entrepreneurship and job opportunities and unlock potential through job training and funding for home ownership.