Spirit of Sovereignty Foundation
Letha Lamb, President

The year 2000 was the catalyst year for the Scholarship Program. Through the diligent efforts of NIGA member tribes and associate members alike, funds in excess of $100,000 were pledged at the “Power of One” benefit concert in Portland last April. The foundation was appropriately named the “Spirit of Sovereignty” to reflect the efforts of its parent entity, the National Indian Gaming Association. The foundation has established a relationship with the American Indian Graduate Center, facilitating the student selections for the first presentation of the "Spirit Awards." At NIGA 2001, graduates who best represent the criteria of spirited individuals will be awarded their scholarship funding from the Spirit of Sovereignty Foundation.

In the fall of 2001, the Spirit of Sovereignty Foundation will look to extend its scholarship support to undergraduates. Taking into account the vast use of Internet access and web search sites, our next level of scholarship awards will utilize the information highway to reach out to our next round of scholarship candidates.

We begin now on a journey, setting out to make a difference for those students whose spirit and drive for higher education reflect the Spirit of Sovereignty we so greatly strive to preserve.

A special "Thank You" to the founding Board Members:

  • Tracy Burris, Chickasaw Nation
  • John McCoy, Tullalip Tribes
  • Larry DeSoto, Tule River Indian Reservation
  • Victor Rocha, Pechanga.Net
  • Rollie Hill, SODAK Gaming