Chief's Open Road

CHIEF ALLAN

Tribal Chairman
Coeur d'Alene Tribe

“You can do anything if you believe in it and your heart's in the right place.”

INTERESTS:

Government Politics

THEMES DISCUSSED:

Culture Community Education Experience Goals Pride Struggle Societal Pressures Hard Work

FOUNDATION:

Helping People

BIOGRAPHY:

  • Grew up with high rates of poverty, alcoholism on the reservation.
  • He loved his home, but was "scared of it"; saw multiple friends die from alcohol-related accidents.
  • Knew schooling could be his way out; was the first person from his family to graduate from college.
  • Made it a point to "hang out with everybody" at school, learn about as many different cultures he could, educate others on his background.
  • Got a degree in political science because he knew he "always wanted to help his people advance to the next step."
  • Was sent to Washington D.C. to work for a nonprofit that advocated for Native Americans on the hill.
  • Realized that the "work" needed to be done back home; D.C. was a bit out of touch from the reservations.
  • Came back and was elected to tribal council, chosen for chairman three years later.

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