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Stories firing up Indian Country

We're tackling tough issues of sovereignty and human remains. Plus, we have more on caring for our relatives and proposed state legislation to address missing and murdered Indigenous people. And we might even sneak in a heartthrob
Zahn McClarnon (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP)

Zahn McClarnon, Hunkpapa Lakota

Zahn McClarnon is an award-winning actor who has appeared in over 80 film and television productions. He most recently stole the hearts of many for his role in “Reservation Dogs” He also stars in “The Last Manhunt” with Jason Momoa.

FEBRUARY 2022: Washington State Rep. Debra Lekanoff, Tlingt and Aleut, is advancing bills in the state's Legislature to address the crisis of missing and murdered Indigenous relatives. (Photo courtesy of Lekanoff)

Rep. Debra Lekanoff, Tlingit & Aleut

Tlingit & Aleut citizen Debra Lekanoff is the only Native person currently serving in its state Legislature. We talk with her about two bills that would address the current crisis of missing and murdered Indigenous women.

John Tahsuda III, Kiowa

John Tahsuda III, Kiowa

To help us understand this complex issue surrounding the Nooksack Tribe's disenrollment 306 tribal citizens is John Tahsuda III. He’s the former senior counselor to the secretary of the Interior and principal deputy assistant secretary of Indian Affairs.

FEBRUARY 2022: David Barland-Liles was hired by the National Park Service on January 31, 2022 as the first full time investigator of the hallmark law the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act. (Photo courtesy of Barland-Liles)

David Barland Liles, NAGPRA investigator

Also on the show is David Barland-Liles, the first ever investigator for The Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act. The law requires museums and federal agencies to identify Native human remains and other objects of cultural significance then return them to tribal nations. NAGPRA has gone over 3 decades without an investigator until now. 

Voices from Pejuhutaziz - Teresa Peterson & Walter "Super" LaBatte, Jr. COURTESY Minnesota Historical Society Press

Voices from Pejuhutaziz, Authors Teresa Peterson & Walter "Super" LaBatte, Jr.

'Voices from Pejuhutazizi' is a new book by Teresa Peterson and her uncle Walter "Super" LaBatte, Jr. It combines Dakota legends and oral histories. Pioneer PBS in Granite Falls, Minnesota shares this story.

  • A new report from the Brookings Institution says Indigenous people are being left behind in this economy. 
  • The Department of Interior is rejecting North Dakota’s claim to the Mandan Hidatsa and Arikara Nation’s minerals. 
  • Just in time for Valentine’s day, a virtual Indigenous speed friending event is taking place on Feb. 13.

Find more details on these headlines at the top of today's show.


Today's newscast was created with help from:

Aliyah Chavez, Kewa Pueblo, is the anchor of the ICT newscast. On Twitter: @aliyahjchavez.

Shirley Sneve, Ponca/Sicangu Lakota, is vice president of broadcasting for Indian Country Today. Follow her on Twitter @rosebudshirley She’s based in Nebraska and Minnesota.

R. Vincent Moniz, Jr., NuÉta, is a producer for the ICT newscast. Have a great story you've just got to share? Pitch it to

Patty Talahongva, Hopi, is senior correspondent for Indian Country Today. Follow her on Twitter: @WiteSpider.

Kaitlin Onawa Boysel, Cherokee, is a producer/reporter for Indian Country Today. On Instagram: @KaitlinBoysel Boysel is based in South Carolina.

Drea Yazzie, Diné, is a producer/editor for the ICT newscast. On Twitter: @quindreayazzie Yazzie is based in Phoenix.

Maxwell Montour, Pottawatomi, is a newscast editor for Indian Country Today. On Instagram: max.montour Montour is based in Phoenix.

Mary Grace Pewewardy, Hopi/Comanche/Kiowa, is an intern at Indian Country Today. On Instagram: @mgpewewardy. Pewewardy is based in Phoenix, and enjoys playing video games.

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