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 Washington 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.
In our work here at Longhouse Media, we have 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, co-presenting with Northwest Film Forum our monthly screenings entitled Indigenous Showcase, working in collaboration with Native youth and Vision Maker Media (PBS) to produce the acclaimed feature length documentary March Point for PBS; Independent Lens, supporting the work of Urban Indian artists through multi-media art shows, 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 multimedia 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.
*Our initial signature youth program, 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.
Staff and Board
Tracy Rector (Choctaw/Seminole), co-founder
Tracy Rector is a mixed race (Choctaw/Seminole) filmmaker, curator, community organizer, co-founder of Longhouse Media and a 2016 Stranger Genius. She has made over 400 short films, and is currently in production of her fifth feature documentary. As co-producer of the award-winning film Teachings of the Tree People, producer of March Point, co-director of Clearwater, and director of Ch'aak' S'aagi; Rector 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’, Toronto International Film Festival, the Seattle Art Museum and in the Smithsonian’s Museum of the American Indian.
After years of galvanizing community and working in a directorial role, Rector has begun to transfer her method of storytelling to gallery exhibitions including RE:DEFINITION at the Paramount Theatre Gallery, YOU ARE ON INDIGENOUS LAND at Core Gallery, Women On the Brink at Vermillion Gallery, and BLOODLINES at Bridge Productions. As a Native Education specialist, Rector has facilitated work with over 3,000 youth, worked as a consultant with the Seattle Art Museum (SAM), served as a Native Naturalist for the Olympic Sculpture Park, and will have her first major exhibition this summer at SAM, opening on June 14th, as part of Double Exposure.
Tracy has received the National Association for Media Literacy award for outstanding contributions made in the field of media education, she is currently a Firelight Media Fellow, is a WGBH Producer Fellow, Sundance Institute Lab Fellow, Tribeca All Access Grantee and is the recipient of the Horace Mann Award for her work in utilizing media for social justice.
Jacob Bearchum (Confederated Tribes of Umatilla/N. Cheyenne/Walla Walla/Yakama/Bitterroot Salish), EDITOR
Eleni Ledesma (Latinx/Apache), PROGRAM COORDINATOR
Eleni Ledesma is an Indigenous Latinx centered producer and program coordinator based in Seattle, WA. Her passion for filmmaking and philanthropy, over the past decade, has led her to work on the feature film “My Last Year with the Nuns”, as the producer on “Confessions of a Social Bully” and as an associate producer on “Mildred Bailey”, a virtual reality experience. Eleni currently works with Longhouse Media as an associate producer, is the program coordinator for Indigenous Showcase and volunteers for the Seattle International Film Festival. She has served as board president for The Northwest Literacy Foundation, and is a current board member with the Seattle Latino Film Festival. Eleni is a graduate of the University of Washington.
Hannah Victoria Franklin, BOOKKEEPER
Hannah holds a BA from the University of Colorado and an MFA from the University of Washington. In addition to her work with Longhouse Media, she is the Accountant for Chief Seattle Club which exists to serve the needs of homeless and low-income urban American Indian and Alaska Native people.
Previously she has served as the CFO and Operations Director of Nature Consortium, Accountant for United Indians of All Tribes Foundation and the Managing Director of Washington Ensemble Theater. Hannah also serves as Treasurer on the Board of Directors of Red Eagle Soaring Native Youth Theater whose mission is to empower American Indian and Alaska Native youth to express themselves with confidence and clarity through traditional and contemporary performing arts. Before becoming Board Treasurer she directed and developed nearly a dozen productions with the organization. Hannah has also taught acting at the University of Washington, Bishop Blanchet and Seattle Children's Theater and has performed locally and internationally in Washington, Canada, Minnesota, Colorado, Russia, Japan, Uzbekistan and New York's Carnegie Hall.