Brewer appoints Spotted Bear to NAJA Board of Directors

Norman, Okla. — Native American Journalists Association President Graham Lee Brewer (Cherokee Nation) appointed Jodi Rave Spotted Bear (Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara Nation / Lakota) to fill the board vacancy left by Francine Compton (Sandy Bay Ojibway First Nation) who stepped down to join NAJA staff as associate director last month. 

Spotted Bear serves as a board member for the Society of Professional Journalists Foundation and an at-large director for SPJ where she chairs the SPJ Freedom of Information Committee. After working in the mainstream press for 15 years, she is now the founder and executive director of the Indigenous Media Freedom Alliance, a nonprofit media organization located in Bismarck, N.D. The Alliance operates Buffalo’s Fire, an independent digital news site. 

In 2003, Spotted Bear received the Nieman Fellowship for journalists at Harvard University and was selected in 2021 as a Bush Fellow in recognition of her commitment to journalism within Indigenous communities. She was awarded the 2020-2021 MIT Knight Science Journalism Fellowship and the John S. Knight Community Impact Fellow at Stanford University in 2021. Her writing is featured in “The Authentic Voice: The Best Reporting on Race and Ethnicity,” published by Columbia University Press.

Brewer said Spotted Bear was an excellent candidate to fill the appointment slot. 

“Jodi is not only a skilled journalist but also a strong advocate for press freedoms in Indian Country. I know her expertise and wisdom will be a tremendous benefit to the board of directors and our members,” Brewer said. 

The remaining officers and members will continue to serve the board for the duration of their elected terms. 

2023 NAJA Board of Directors

  • Graham Lee Brewer (Cherokee Nation), President
  • Christine Trudeau (Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation), Vice President
  • Angel Ellis (Muscogee Nation), Treasurer
  • Pauly Denetclaw (Diné), Secretary
  • Jourdan Bennett-Begaye (Diné)
  • Savannah Maher (Mashpee Wampanoag)
  • Angel Moore (Peguis First Nation)
  • Shondiin Silversmith (Diné)
  • Jodi Rave Spotted Bear (Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara Nation / Lakota)

Leave a Reply