Meet our 2017 Organizing Fellows

This is the second year BMWC has offered a fellowship for young, aspiring individuals. This year's fellowship was focused on organizing around the Just Transition campaign. Just Transition is a framework for a fair shift to an economy that is ecologically sustainable, equitable, and just for all its members. Each fellow had to develop a JT curriculum and create a workshop in their community. Another aspect of this year's fellowship was introducing them to the KTNN Radio Forum. At the end of their fellowship, the fellows got together to develop their own forum about what Just Transition means for them and their community.
Shawna Yazzie
2017 Fellow

Shawna is Tótsohnii, the Big Water clan born for Tł’ááshchí’í, the Red Bottom People. Kinyaa’áanii, the Towering House People is her maternal grandfather’s clan and Ta’neeszahnii, the Tangle People are her paternal grandfather’s clan. She is from Pinon, Arizona specifically in an area known as Big Water.

Shawna graduated from Dine College with an Associates Degree in Dine Studies in 2015 and is currently a Senior at Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colorado. She’s majoring in Native American Indigenous Studies and a minor in Peace and Conflict. Her main focus is to bring positive energy back into Navajo communities while educating young children on the importance of the Dine cultural teachings. In this way, we call fully reclaim peace and harmony. She believes that as the fourth oldest of eight siblings there is a role that she plays in motivating and maintaining positive thoughts in her family. She would also like to bring this role into Black Mesa Water Coalition.

Shawna’s work with BMWC was focused on developing a curriculum on Just Transition while giving input to, learning from, and supporting the Climate Justice Alliance (CJA) nation-wide efforts.

Eden Clah
2017 Fellow

Eden is Ma’ii Deeshiizhinii, born for Tabaahá. Her maternal grandfather is Kinlichíi’nii and paternal grandfather is Tódích’íi’nii. She currently lives and works in Flagstaff, Arizona. While she’s not working, Eden attends school at the Coconino Community College. She will be completing her general studies and is trying to decide a major to pursue.

While with BMWC, Eden focused on specific topics relating to Navajo communities and planned and coordinated three radio forums that will be broadcasted throughout the year on KTNN AM 660.

Brandon Ami
2017 Fellow

Brandon is Tótsohnii, born for Kéha’atiinii. He is from Pinon, Arizona and is has been working with BMWC. He is also working in BMWC’s Restorative Economy Program, farming, conducting land restoration techniques, and learning about traditional teachings.

Brandon Barton
2017 Fellow

Brandon is Tł’ízí lání, born for Nát’oh dine’é Táchii’nii. His maternal grandfather’s clan is Mą’ii deeshgiizhinii. Brandon is from Crow Spring, Arizona and is currently a freshman at Diné College.

While with BMWC, Brandon is working in the Restorative Economy Program, conducting land restoration techniques, and learning about traditional teachings.

Lanshawn Begay
2017 Fellow

Lanshawn is Kinłichii’nii, born for Kinyaa’áanii. Tábąąhá is his maternal grandparents’ clan. He’s originally from Roundrock, Arizona but currently resides in Pinon.

Lanshawn is a part of BMWC’s Restorative Economy Program where he conducts corn field restoration, watershed restoration, and community engagement. He also utilizes Google Maps to map watershed areas and locates various landscape features in the Dził Yijiin area.

Lanshawn also works with the Little Colorado River Watershed Chapters Association (LCRWCA), traveling across the Navajo Nation working with community members, elders, and youth. He also worked with Arizona Conservation, based in Flagstaff.

Jesse Brookins
2017 Fellow

Jessé Brookins is a senior at NAU. He is majoring in Social Sciences while minoring in Business and Ethnic Studies. Jessé is very active on campus as a member of the Black Student Union, Union Diversity Council, and Gold’n Brown. Upon receiving his degree, Jessé plans to pursue a career as a humanitarian teaching in “3rd World” countries.

While at BMWC, Jesse focused on developing a script for the winter KTNN radio series that tells the story of just transition. He also worked on creating an event for all local organizers and community members.

Fellowship Gallery

In the summer of 2017, our fellows spent 10 weeks learning how to organize around the Just Transition Movement! During that time they also helped construct a Diné Male Hogan at the base of our eastern sacred mountain, Sisnaajini. Each fellow also created a workshop on Just Transition to present in their community which included: constructing a community garden, making lesson plans for kids, and using art to demonstrate Just Transition through a Diné lens. Check out the pictures below!