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U.S. State Department Asks Sonny Skyhawk to Be Cultural Ambassador

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Sonny Skyhawk, Rosebud Sioux, an accomplished actor and activist, has been asked by the U.S. State Department to serve as a Cultural Ambassador representing Indian country around the world. His first visits will likely be to South America, the Caribbean, Canada, and Mexico.

As a Cultural Ambassador, Skyhawk will be for the most part an educator, sharing all aspects of Native American culture with people in other nations upon request. Talks could be geared toward, for example, indigenous peoples or the business communities of the countries he visits. He also aims to promote tourism and economic development by inviting people to come to visit reservations and traditional Indian lands within the borders of the United States.

Skyhawk is the founder of American Indians in Film and Television, and has spent his career trying to improve the depiction of American Indians in media as well as the treatment of Native actors in Hollywood.

"It is an honor to serve and represent my people, and I am humbled by the privilege," Skyhawk said. "It is my hope to continue fostering lasting bonds of understanding amongst all indigenous cultures in the Americas, and to nurture our ancient Lakota belief, which is 'mitakuya oyasin' -- 'we are all related.'"

Skyhawk has appeared in 58 films and television shows, and is also author of the "Ask N NDN" feature at ICTMN.com.