Washington, DC – National Indian
Education Association’s Board of Directors announces today that it has
begun a leadership transition in order to take the next steps in its
evolution as the nation’s leading advocate for American Indian, Alaska
Native, and Native Hawaiian students.
Colin Kippen, a Native Hawaiian who is NIEA’s current
executive director, will leave the association on May 31 after nearly two
years at the helm. This transition has been in the works for the past
month. A lawyer and longtime advocate, Kippen is leaving to further his advocacy
on national policy issues.
During his nearly two years as Executive
Director, Kippen has stepped up NIEA’s advocacy for advancing excellent,
culturally-based education for Native students. This includes successfully
advocating President Barack Obama to sign Executive Order 13592, a
which marks the administration’s commitment to reforming
Native education and makes this goal a priority across all federal
agencies. During Kippen’s tenure, NIEA also helped craft and is supporting
the passage of the Native CLASS Act, which would amend the No Child Left
Behind Act/Elementary and Secondary Education Act to give Native
communities a stronger voice in shaping education for their children; and
has worked with the U.S. Department of Education to organize a series of
consultations with American Indian Tribal leaders around improving the
education of Native children.
Says Kippen: “I
look forward to the future with hope and optimism. I
believe we have accomplished much in the time I have been with the NIEA,
and have confidence that the NIEA board will carry this organization to
even higher heights as it works to better the education and the lives of
American Indians, Alaska Natives, and Native Hawaiians. I am and will
always be a lifelong advocate for our native children, their families, and
“We have accomplished much together and
are thankful for Colin’s advocacy on behalf of our native children, their
families, and their communities”, says NIEA President Quinton Roman Nose.
“Our board wishes Colin well and look forward to our collective futures
with hope, optimism, and a renewed sense of commitment to improve the
education of the native people we are called upon to serve.”
Kippen will be succeeded on an interim
basis by Gerald E. Gipp, a longtime education advocate and member of
Rock Sioux. The former executive director of the
American Indian Higher Education Consortium, Dr. Gipp has a lifelong record
of advancing education for Native students.
To build upon NIEA’s recent successes and sustain its mission, the Board of
Directors will launch a national search for the next Executive Director.
Reporters can contact NIEA Communications
at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (202)
544-7290 for more information on the association’s transition.
leadership and staff
NIEA begins its leadership transition.
leading advocate for all Native children is looking to build upon its
MEDIA CONTACT: NIEA Communications (email@example.com
National Indian Education Association: The premiere organization
advocating for educational excellence, opportunity, and equity for American
Indian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian students, the mission of the
National Indian Education Association (NIEA) is to support traditional Native
cultures and values; to enable Native learners to become contributing
members of their communities; to promote Native control of educational
institutions; and to improve educational opportunities and resources for
American Indians, Alaska Natives and Native Hawaiians throughout the United
States. Learn more at www.NIEA.org.