Continuing Native Education

Joel's Story

What a year 2020 has been for Native filmmakers, and it’s all because of the incredible support of our donors. Whether you’ve been giving to Vision Maker Media for several years, or it’s your first time, your donation helps uplift the voices of Native communities, and we couldn’t do this without you.

We want to give a shout-out to one of our newer donors: Joel. Joel first heard about Vision Maker Media through his local PBS station. After attending Vision Maker Media’s First Online Indigenous Film Festival he decided to give a monthly donation to Vision Maker Media.

Bader Creek promotional still
Photo from "Badger Creek"

“I was excited to hear about different stories—stories no one had heard of,” Joel said. “I want to support Indigenous people sharing Indigenous stories.”

Joel, a college professor, grew up immersed in Native American culture, but he noticed that his children were not receiving the same experience. Determined to keep his family informed on a subject near to his heart, he set about teaching his children himself. As a family they talk about the tribes in their community and visit various nearby historical and tribal locations. “It helps us all learn and know more about other cultures,” he said.

Joel’s donations are an investment, ensuring Native Americans receive the tools and funding they need to share their own stories. He’s supporting emerging filmmaker mentorship programs, assisting in filmmaker training, and online events like the Vision Maker Media Online Film Festival.

“There is something about someone telling their own story,” he said.

Do you want to support Native stories by and about Native people? 

What was Ours Promo photo
Photo from "What Was Ours"

Walt Pourier

Vice Chair

Walt is Oglala Lakota and created the logo for Urban Rez. He is Creative Director, owner of Nakota Designs Advertising Designs and Graphics. Executive Director of the Stronghold Society nonprofit dedicated to instilling hope and supporting youth movements through Live Life Call To Action Campaigns.