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Director of Native American Engagement Attends Premiere Conference in Las Vegas

Each year, the National Reservation Economic Summit (RES) brings together respected tribal leaders; state, local and federally elected officials; CEOs and organizational members to discuss matters related Native American tribal enterprise and business. This year, Big Brothers Big Sisters of America’s Director of Native American Engagement Carroll Swan joined the summit in Las Vegas to share Big Brothers Big Sisters’ mission with representatives from Indian Country.

Over the past couple of years, this conference has grown into one of the premiere conferences in the United States for tribal enterprises in business. Approximately 150 vendors, including federal agencies, tribal enterprises and tribal-serving nonprofits, attended for networking, partnership and business development opportunities.

Swan had a few key goals he hoped to accomplish by attending the conference, such as strengthening Big Brothers Big Sisters’ relationship with Indian Country, including looking for adult volunteers from the community; encouraging people involved in tribal businesses to become local board members and identifying and developing potential partnerships and fundraising opportunities.

Margo Gray, Big Brothers Big Sisters of America board member, sits on the board for the RES. This is the second major Native American conference that Big Brothers Big Sisters has had a presence since November, when Gray and Swan attended the 70th annual National Congress of American Indians.

Maintaining a regular presence at major conferences and summits such as the RES draws increased attention to what Big Brothers Big Sisters of America tries to accomplish with the country’s Native American communities.

Swan noted that by initiating relationships and then reconnecting at subsequent conferences, Big Brothers Big Sisters is making inroads that might not otherwise have been possible. Swan was approached for potential partnerships and fundraising opportunities by both a major tribe and a Native American enterprise in the transport industry.

“It’s opening doors,” Swan said. “This never would have happened without us being at the conference. By starting relationships and following up, we’re promoting our brand in Indian Country.”


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