The mission of Longhouse Media is to catalyze indigenous people and communities to use media as a tool for self-expression, cultural preservation, and social change.
Longhouse Media, a Washingn State non-profit organization, was launched in January 2005. Our vision was to start an indigenous media arts organization that would nurture the expression and development of Native artists, drawing from traditional and modern forms of storytelling, cultural identity, teaching and inquiry, based in the technologies of today.
Central to Longhouse Media is the belief that young people are the next generation of storytellers and educators and we focus much of our efforts on our nationally acclaimed youth media program ‘Native Lens.’ * Native Lens teaches filmmaking to Native youth as a form of self-expression, inquiry, community development, and cultural pride and preservation. In the last four years the Native Lens program has grown and flourished due to an outpouring of support, and interest from Native youth, community members and tribal leaders. Youth produced work created through Native Lens has not only yielded strong and positive new media, but also increased participants‘ self esteem, worked as a catalyst for community interaction and dialog, and supported youth in the development of life skills and academic success in school. In only almost 7 dynamic years we have worked with more than 1500 Native youth in the Pacific Northwest through partnerships with regional tribes, funding agencies and established non-profits.
Meanwhile, Longhouse Media has continued to develop an array of successful media arts programming for indigenous communities; partnering with the Seattle International Film Festival to organize and host the annual SuperFly Filmmaking Experience, working in collaboration with Native youth and Native American Public Telecommunications to produce the acclaimed feature length documentary March Point for PBS; Independent Lens, supporting the work of Urban Indian artists through the annual art show ‘First Expressions,’ launching the on-reservation Native produced daily television show Native Lens TV with an audience of 100,000 viewers, and offering an ongoing series of educational workshops and trainings in partnership with tribes, schools, museums, cultural centers and health clinics. We are both proud and humbled by our successes, fueled by the knowledge that we are bridging a gap between Native communities and digital media, and providing life skills, career development in the media field, community involvement through multi media projects, and artistic expression through digital filmmaking. We wish to thank all of our supporters, tribal partners, students, mentors, community members, funders, and volunteers, for your inspiration, generosity, and dedication.
*Native Lens was established in 2003 by 911 Media Arts Center and developed in partnership with the Swinomish Indian Tribal Community as a model media literacy program for Native youth. Longhouse Media wishes to thank 911 for its efforts to establish the Native Lens program.
Support the emergence of new media works by indigenous artists and communities.
Create and sustain educational arts and technology programs that are culturally relevant and based in a collaborative process between Longhouse Media, Native youth, elders, educators, youth workers, artists, and filmmakers.
Break down negative stereotypes of Native people in the media.
Produce high quality media for the broad community relating to Native issues and people. Also, to support indigenous non-profits with access to affordable media and video productions.
Provide youth the skills necessary to tell their own stories through digital media.
Foster experiences for young people and adults that provide career development in the media field, community involvement through media projects, and artistic expression through digital filmmaking.
Tracy Rector (Seminole), Executive Director
earned her Masters in Education from Antioch University’s First Peoples Program. She specialized in Native American Studies, traditional plant medicine and documentary film. As the co-producer of the award-winning film Teachings of the Tree People, producer of March Point and director of Unreserved Tracy has developed an awareness and sensitivity to the power of media and film as a modern storytelling tool. Her work has been featured on Independent Lens, Cannes Film Festival, ImagineNative, National Geographic’s All Roads Film Project and in the Smithsonian’s Museum of the American Indian. As a Native Education specialist, Tracy offers unique insight to her projects. Her vision is to bring traditional and contemporary education together on a foundation based in environmental stewardship. She has worked as a consultant with the Seattle Art Museum as an education specialist, as a Native Naturalist for the Olympic Sculpture Park and in planning for the new expanded Native American wing of the Seattle Art Museum and the international exhibition S’abadeb-The Gifts: Pacific Coast Salish Art and Artists. Tracy also developed curriculum for IslandWood, an environmental education center. In 2009 Tracy received the National Association for Media Literacy award for outstanding contributions made in the field of media education (previously awarded to Jon Stewart and Bill Moyers). She is a recent Sundance Institute Lab Fellow and is the recipient of the Horace Mann Award for her work in utilizing media for social justice. Tracy was raised in Seattle and Albuquerque, both homes have inspired her artistic and cultural vision. She currently works and lives in Seattle with her two boys. Tracy is the Co-founder of Longhouse Media.
Lou Karsen, Program Manager/Editor
brings a passion for social change to his filmmaking, a sensibility he attributes to working in different communities throughout the world. A graduate of Boston University?'s film program, Lou was privileged to work with pioneering producer Norma Heyman while studying abroad in London, England. In 2007 Lou began work on a feature length documentary, Renaissance Village, the site of the largest post-Katrina FEMA trailer park. With a small crew, Lou spent 18 months in Baker, Louisiana recording the stories of the 3000+ storm evacuees. RV played at more than a dozen festivals, winning awards and stimulating great debate. Some of his clients include PBS, CRM Properties, Seattle Urban Farm Co., and Forsher Productions. Lou is currently Longhouse Media's Lead Program Coordinator for our Native Lens youth filmmaking program. Lou has been with Longhouse Media Since February of 2010.
Mila Wilkinson, Print Traffic Coordinator Mila is a graduate of Western Washington University's Fairhaven College of Interdisciplinary Studies. Her concentration, titled Digital Storytelling, combined video production, audio engineering, creative writing, sociology and psychology. It was while working on a video for a history class at Garfield High School that Mila first encountered video production and began to see it as a possible career. The video was messy, badly shot and horribly lit, but Mila loved every minute of it. She is excited to be a part of Longhouse Media, making sure that future students' first video projects don't turn out like hers did and to make sure that LM films get to where they are going!
Germaine Salmine (Alutiiiq), Program Assistant
lives in Seattle, Washington and has lived in this area for the past 9 years. She was born in Kodiak, Alaska where the majority of her extended family resides today. She is Alutiiq Alaskan Native, her culture and ancestry has stemmed her interest in Native studies and has inspired her throughout her college career. She is currently a senior at the University of Washington and working on a Bachelor's degree of American Indian Studies and a minor in Education. With her degree she would like to work with Native communities throughout the Pacific Northwest, working with younger generations, on language recovery, future college opportunities, and education.
Zoe Furlong, Office Assistant/Animator
Zoe is currently a sophomore at Dartmouth College in their film and media studies department and Native American studies. Zoe has been lucky enough to travel to many diverse places including Peru, Scandinavia, The Four Corners area where she spent time on the Navajo Reservation and Zuni Pueblo. Zoe’s travels to the southwest inspired her recent stop motion animation about identity entitled Iikaah. She has enjoyed filmmaking as a hobby since the age of eleven, and is looking to have a career in film production. She also enjoys acting, writing and performing music, thrift shopping, running track, and relaxing with friends. Zoe has been with Longhouse Media for over two years.
Victor Pascual (Navajo/Mayan), Graphic Designer
As an accomplished artist, illustrator and graphic designer, Victor’s
work focuses on the contemporary struggles of being indigenous in
an urban environment. He has had the opportunity to work with some
of the most inspiring individuals and organizations within the Native
community today while building a sizable portfolio, which also includes
corporate clients and institutions, including Microsoft, Northwest
Folklife Festival, National Indian Gaming Association, and National
Indian Child Welfare Association.
Marc Taylor, (Lummi), Chair
Marc earned a Bachelors Degree in Chemistry from the University of Washington (1994) and a Masters Degree from Georgetown University (1998). An enrolled member of the Lummi Nation, Mark served as Lummi's CFO and Economic Development Director for 6 years. During that time, Lummi built the Silver Reef Casino and the Lummi Tribal School. Marc has worked within Seattle's Native Community in different capacities at United Indians of All Tribes Foundation, Potlatch Fund, Chief Seattle Club and currently as the Community Services Manger for the Seattle Indian Health Board.
Lisa Burgueno, (Mexican-American), Vice Chair
Lisa is a filmmaker of Mexican-American descent, who has been working in film and television since 2002. Her experience includes King 5 Television, National Geographic, the United Nations and several independent documentary and short narrative projects based in Washington, DC and New York. Lisa is currently in post-production of a feature documentary, “The Kings of DC,” and she works in film programming for Zune and Xbox at Microsoft. She studied at the University of Washington.
Jody Olney, (Muscogee Creek), Secretary
Jody is an enrolled member of the Muscogee Creek Nation. She also has close family ties to the following Nations: Nez Perce, Yakama, and Karok. Jody considers the West Coast her home, as has lived in Washington, Oregon, and California throughout her childhood and primarily Washington since high school. Pursuing her undergraduate education at the University of Washington is what originally brought Jody to Seattle. She later received additional training as a paralegal, and worked with a couple of law firms in intellectual property. Most recently, Jody began Law School at the University of Washington, autumn of 2010, and has an interest in Indian Law and Environmental Law. Along with law school, Jody has two young children, who keep her and her husband, Aaron, very busy.
Jessica E. Salvador (Ecuadorian-Peruvian American), Treasurer
Jessica grew up in Los Angeles, California and has been working in education since 1999. Her education experience includes non-profit, k-12, and higher education. Most recently, Jessica served as Executive Director for Campaña Quetzal, and worked at the Center for Experiential Learning at the University of Washington advising students in research and teaching critical qualitative methods and education service learning courses. Jessica is currently pursuing a PhD in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies at the UW. Her research addresses the role of place and communication cues on how students of color navigate higher education and access institutional services.Salvador has a Masters in Education degree from the University of La Verne and a Bachelors in Science degree in Civil Engineering from the University of California, Berkeley.
Dana Arviso, Fiscal Representative (Diné) Dana is currently the Executive Director of the Potlatch Fund. She has a passion and calling for philanthropic and social justice work. Her background is in higher education where she studied at the University of Washington, where her focus was on the out-of-school literacy experiences of Native American youth. She was especially interested in how Native youth gain opportunities to play with media and technology and how this exposure may help them to become more literate in this digital era. Dana is also a writer, college instructor, amateur photographer, and a volunteer at a number of social justice-oriented nonprofit organizations.
Shanoa Pinkham (Yakama/Southern Cheyenne)
Shanoa has been a part of Longhouse Media for the past five years and has participated in their SuperFly Filmmaking Experience twice. Pinkham, a Communications and Native Studies student at the University of Washington, was named 2011-2012 Miss Yakama Nation and Miss Indian Nations where she focuses on advocating for filmmaking and education in her community and for Native people across the United States. Her first film was a documentary on House Bill 1945 on Indian Education in Washington State. She is a program coordinator, filmmaker and mentor for the Yakama Nation Cultural Multimedia Youth Workshop and continues to serve as a college mentor for the Seattle Clearsky Native Youth Council.
Rose Stiffarm (Blackfoot/Tsartlip/Cowichan/Cree/Gross Ventre/Assiniboine/Sioux)
Rose is Siksika Blackfoot, Tsartlip, Cowichan, Chippewa Cree, Gros Ventre and Assiniboine Sioux. She was born and raised in Seattle, Washington. She is an artist whose work spans different types of media. She has taken drawing and painting, drama, stage tech, band, music, graphic arts, journalism, and printmaking. Her interest in film was sparked in middle school by a short documentary she made for her history class. Rose was part of an all-Native theatre group called "Red Eagle Soaring" from 12 until she was 16. At Garfield High School she was a tech person in lighting and set construction and a stagehand. She played clarinet and alto saxophone in the award-winning Seattle All-City Marching Band, and the Garfield Marching Band throughout her high school years. Rose has received an honorable mention for her print "INDN Man" from the Seattle Central Community Colleges League for Innovation Art Competition in 2009. In 2009 she moved to Vancouver, BC. and was accepted into Capilano University’s Indigenous Independent Digital Film program where she is a current student.
Katie Plovie, University of Washington Board Fellow Katie has grown up in the Pacific Northwest. She graduated from the University of Washington in 2006 with honors and distinction in English and Psychology. While there she became passionate about the written word, or the expression of self, and behavior, or what drives people. Upon graduation, Katie worked for Madrona Solutions Group where she used data analytics to help companies better understand how to increase consumer adoption. She also created a program with Madrona Solutions Group to facilitate employee engagement within the community, volunteered with the Seattle Public Library to help children improve their reading and math skills, and worked with Page Ahead, a local nonprofit dedicated to encouraging young children to read. Katie is currently acquiring her MBA from the University of Washington. Because she believes film and writing provide people with the motivation to learn more about themselves and who they want to become, she is very excited to be working with Longhouse Media & Native Lens.
Angela Steach, University of Washington Board Fellow Angela is a second-year Masters of Public Administration student at the University of Washington and has worked with nonprofits for over five years. Raised in Sonoma, CA, she moved to Chicago, IL for her undergraduate studies. Passionate about human services and nonprofit organizations, Angela hopes to run a non-profit focused on workforce development. In 2010 Angela had a whirlwind of excitement that included graduating college, moving to Seattle, starting graduate school, and getting married. When not studying for her classes, Angela and her husband, Joe, enjoy quiet nights at home with their cat, Charlie, and exploring the Northwest.
Sherman Alexie, (Spokane/Coeur d’Alene)
is a founding Board Member and current project advisor, who grew up on the Spokane Indian Reservation in Wellpinit, WA, is an author, poet, and filmmaker living in Seattle. In 2007 Sherman won the National Book Award for his teen novel The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian and in 2010 he won the prestigious PEN/Faulkner Award for writing. He has been an active contributor and mentor to Native Lens, and Longhouse Media Board member since our inception. www.fallsapart.com