EventsNative American Education in Illinois Schools: Panel Discussion

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Native American Education in Illinois Schools: Panel Discussion

6:00 PM – 7:00 PM
Harold Washington Library Center


Come hear from Native American and education leaders about what’s in store for Illinois public school students in 2024, as the state will begin requiring schools to teach about the history of Native Americans of the Midwest and State of Illinois as part of their curriculum. Dr. Dorene Wiese, president of the American Indian Association of Illinois, moderates this conversation and is joined by Fawn Pochel and Clovia Malatare. 

Dr. Dorene Wiese, White Earth Ojibwe, enrolled, and descendent of the Oneida, Seneca, Dakota, and Brotherton nations, is the founding president of the American Indian Association of Illinois and CEO/ professor emeritus of NAES, Inc (formerly NAES College.) Dr. Wiese has also, served as a professor of American Indian studies courses at Eastern Illinois University and the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago. In addition, she rose through the ranks to become the highest ranking American Indian, Illinois Community College administrator, during her 20-year tenure with CCC. Her life’s work has been advocating for urban American Indian education and Urban Native health. She was the first American Indian appointed to the Cook County Health and Hospital Systems board, serving as the Chair, Human Resources for this multi-billion-dollar enterprise. Her artistic endeavors include serving as the artistic director for the Black Hawk Performance Company, the Chicago American Indian Museum Without Walls, the Chicago Native Leadership Academy and the Native Scholars Youth Media Dream Team. In 2022 Wiese was recognized as a Leader for a New Chicago by the Field and MacArthur Foundations.

Fawn Pochel is First Nations Coordinator of Gender & Sexuality; Indigenous/Native American Community Relations at the Angelina Pedroso Center for Diversity and Intercultural Affairs, Northeastern Illinois University and the first Native Grow Your Own Team Candidate at NEIU and first Native MA degree candidate. She is an a co-founder of Chi-Nations and founder of the First Nations Garden in Albany Park. 

Clovia Malatare is an Oglala Lakota Elder, Adult Educator, public school parent, grandparent and Faculty Emeritus, NAES College and the first Native person to receive an MA degree in Public Health from the University of Illinois-Chicago. Clovia served for over 22 years as a Manager, Audit Section, Office of Inspector General, State of Illinois.

This event is co-sponsored by American Indian Association of Illinois.

How to Attend - In Person:
Doors to the Auditorium open at 5:30 p.m., and seating is first come, first served (350 capacity). 

Masks are strongly encouraged in all CPL locations. Questions about visiting the library? Check out our Using the Library FAQ.

How to Attend - Virtual:
This event will also take place live on CPL's YouTube channel and CPL's Facebook page. You'll be able to ask questions during the event as well! Can't make it to the live stream? We'll archive the video on YouTube to watch later.


Automatic captioning is available via Facebook and YouTube's closed captioning setting. Need sign language interpretation or other accessibility assistance for this event? Please call (312) 747-8184 or email to request accommodations. Requests must be made at least 14 business days before the event.

This event is part of the 2023 One Book, One Chicago season, exploring the book There There by Tommy Orange.

One Book, One Chicago
Suitable for:
Adults: 18 and up
History and Genealogy

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