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Ojibwe Professor Gets Race Ambassador Award

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Dr. Anton Treuer, Ojibwe professor at Bemidji State University, was recently named honorable mention for the 2011 St. Paul Foundation’s Facing Race Ambassador Award for his education work with Minnesota’s Native American communities.

This honor comes with a $1,000 grant from the foundation, which goes to the nonprofit of his choice. Treuer chose the Shared Vision initiative partnership with the Bemidji Area Race Relations Task Force (BARRTF).

"The efforts of the Shared Vision initiative have been a tremendous catalyst to the BARRTF work to improve dialogue and understanding across racial lines. Natives and non-Natives alike have enjoyed and benefitted from the organic education and improving communications between tribal communities and the businesses of Bemidji," Treuer said.

The Shared Vision initiative was “designed to encourage the Bemidji area community to work together to expand social, economic, education, and leadership opportunities of people of all races,” says the Shared Vision website.

More than 120 Bemidji businesses have posted bilingual signage in Ojibwe and English, opening the doors of communication between the cultures.