SCHAGHTICOKE FIRST NATION TRIBAL COUNCIL
SACHEM ROBERT HAWK STORM BIRCH
Sachem HawkStorm is the hereditary chief of the Schaghticoke First Nation, one of the three remaining tribes of the indigenous Schaghticoke Nation. He serves as the President of the Tribe's non-profit, Schaghticoke First Nations, Inc. Sachem Hawk Storm is a direct descendant of the great Wampanoag Chief Wasanegin Massasoit. His life’s journey has been one of reclamation, re-indigenization, and reconnection to the land. Since 2012, Hawk Storm has actively advocated for the implementation of the United Nations Rights of Indigenous Peoples and is the Schaghticoke’s main representative at United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues. Under the leadership of Sachem Hawk Storm, Schaghticoke First Nations works in close partnership with local indigenous communities throughout the northeastern U.S., as well as with other Indigenous Peoples from around the world.
ALONDA “SNOWBIRD” POWELL-JOHNSON, CLAN MOTHER
Alonda comes from a multicultural family of Schaghticoke, African and Irish Descent. She is the great-granddaughter of Agnes Dunbar Farrar, who was former Princess of New England Coastal Schaghticoke. Raised with tradition and ceremony, Alonda holds a strong place in the tribe working to guide Sachem Hawk Storm and the Council in making decisions for the people. Preserving and protecting Tribal culture, historical tradition and ceremony are integral to her role. Alonda is instrumental in building, developing and facilitating SFN programs, particularly The Alternative To Addiction program.
ED WOLF WALKER CONLEY—POWWAW (SPIRITUAL LEADER), TRIBAL COUNCIL CHAIR
Born and raised on the banks of the great Hudson River, a homeland of his “River Indian” forefathers. The tides and whispers of the past were his early teachers. After honorable service in the army, he pursued a degree in engineering. He is now retired from a lifetime of employment in the healthcare industry. He also functions as a spiritual leader for the Schaghticoke First Nation.
Debra brings organic veggies to the community in Maine from Peacemeal Farm. She brings her Schaghticoke lineage, the wisdom of her connection to the Earth Mother and sustenance to the council.
ROBERT SHAWN “NOBLE WOLF” GRANT
Shawn is active in many aspects of tribal life and is deeply rooted in his family life, community life, and his faith. To understand him as the leader is to understand how he loves and cares for the family. Providing insight, ideas, fundraising, and development support, and participating in outreaches, Shawn is an active member of his local church body. Coaching for over 20 years in after-school programs and the local YMCA, he takes pride in helping to shape positive futures for local youth. Providing mentoring and uplifting their growth with self-confidence, leadership skills, and emotional support, Shawn is encouraged to see many of these children come to be productive, caring and strong young adults.
SFN TRIBAL OFFICERS
SFN Genealogy Officer
Valerie LaRobardier is a third-generation family historian who worked as a construction manager and architectural designer for 30 years prior to turning her part time passion of genealogy into a full time business. She currently serves as Town of Dover Planning Board Chair and Co-Historian; Board of Directors, webmaster and newsletter editor to Town of Dover Historical Society; Founder of Harlem Valley Historic Pathways; Dover Vice President to the Dutchess County Historical Society; Genealogist of the Schaghticoke First Nations; President of the Dutchess County Genealogical Society and member of the Dutchess County Records Management Advisory Board; Founder and Director of Shane's Path; researcher and webmaster for Agards in America, among others. Valerie is also a member of several regional historical societies and writes a genealogy column for the Highlands Current.
DREW H. SHUPTAR RAYVIS (PEKATAWAS MAKATAWEU, BLACK CORN, AMOK, OTTER)
SFN Youth Education Officer
Certificate in Archaeology and BA Anthropology WCSU (Cum Laude). Drew has spent years as a primitive technologist and living historian of the late 17th and 18th centuries interpreting our Algonkian culture as far north as Bennington Vermont and as far south as Port Jervis New York. He has taught at world renown establishments such as the Mashantucket Pequot Museum and Research Center, The Mohegan Tribal Nation and the Golden Hill Paugussett Tribe as well as a vast range of local historical societies. Drew has spent countless hours re-learning many of our traditional living skills from maple sugaring, cattail mat weaving, flint knapping, hand crafting his own period correct regalia and dressing hides to make leather and pelts. Drew takes great pride in his European and Indigenous heritage and often assists tribal members in their pursuits to become more acquainted with their traditional culture.
Our mission is to preserve, promote and enrich our ancestral heritage, offer guidance to traditionally-minded individuals in their search for direction and provide support to all those seeking harmony and a greater understanding of our collective responsibility as human beings. Through teach-ins, guest lectures, and cultural events, we strive to increase awareness of our true history and ancestral legacy. Language, art, stories, music, and dance invigorate our youth programs. We promote the preservation of existing historic sites important to our history and assist in the identification of new ones. Sachem HawkStorm and council members work to hold a cohesive container to soothe the inter-generational trauma of living as Native people struggling with the dance between indigenous and modern society. Extended genealogical research is an important aspect of what we provide for existing and prospective tribal members. Inter-tribal relations are nurtured by Sachem HawkStorm’s United Nations participation and local education efforts promote awareness of the benefits of Unity and proper care of the Earth. Tribal gatherings, ceremonies, and online educational platforms encourage tribal participation and connect members locally and throughout the US and Canada.
SCHAGHTICOKE FIRST NATIONS, INC. BOARD
Committed to the Cause
The Schaghticoke First Nations, Inc. is an Indigenous led 501c3 organization that serves the interest of the Tribal entity, Schaghticoke First Nations, an indigenous people whose homelands extend through the Hudson and Harlem Valley regions in New York. Several Schaghticoke First Nations Tribal Council Members serve on the board of Schaghticoke First Nations, Inc.
SACHEM HAWK STORM
ED WOLF-WALKER CONLEY
Board Member; Vice-President
ALONDA “SNOWBIRD” POWELL-JOHNSON
Board member, Treasurer
JOSELYN KAXYEK BORRERO
Board Member, Secratary
ROBERT SHAWN "NOBEL WOLF" GRANT
"Let us pause this morn and give thanks for the day, for those that shared the journey to it. All things are sacred and we the keepers of their memory. The respect we all wish comes with the payment of honor, the currency of true people. Some days we lead, others we follow, this is the balance of blessing. The mesingw walks."