Tribal Economic Development Forum – a new online service for tribes
Indian Country Today December 20, 2010
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – With the final announcements of funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, tribes across the country were awarded more than $100 million in federal stimulus funds. Through the newly launched Tribal Economic Development Forum, tribes have a new way to access each other and technical expertise in an economical manner.
The Tribal Economic Development Forum is an online group of tribal members that will have the ability to come together to freely discuss issues, ask questions and get answers about their grant and loan funding and other economic development opportunities. The forum’s aim is to duplicate, in an online manner, the face-to-face cooperation long promoted by tribal culture.
The forum, open only to tribes, is a cost-effective way for tribes to gain the information they need to administer their award. Timely topics being discussed on the forum include changes that may be needed in the RUS template agreements and information about the Technical Assistance Grants being passed on informally by RUS staff. The forum is a great place for all tribes, not just those that received broadband grants, to come together and discuss economic development for their communities.
The forum is moderated by Karen Twenhafel and Brandi Jones. Twenhafel is the president of Twin Houses Consulting, a firm dedicated to economic development projects in Indian country. She assisted with nine successful BIP and BTOP grants during both funding rounds. Jones is a grant consultant and member of the Iowa Tribe of Kansas and Nebraska and a descendant of the United Houma Nation. Together, they have the experience and expertise to assist tribe’s with finding answers to their questions on the grants and tribal economic development.
Subscription terms for forum membership have been tailored to the various award terms including six months, one year and three years. Reasonable rates start at $100 and may be paid online so tribes will have immediate access to the forum.
If any tribe or tribal members are interested in expanding their tribal community development, the Tribal Economic Development Forum is the place for you. Those interested are asked to contact Jones at firstname.lastname@example.org or Twenhafel at email@example.com.