Dean Chavers: Catching the Dream


Please join Laura Waterman Wittstock  on Wednesday, September 5th as she talks Dean Chavers, Director, of Catching the Dream (formerly Native American Scholarship Fund), Albuquerque, NM. His major accomplishments include helping hundreds of Native American students finish college. He is the initiator and national leader of the Exemplary Programs in Indian Education (EPIE) movement, which has produced 39 Exemplary programs in Indian schools. And he is best known to some for his work on Alcatraz, 1969. His new book, "The American Indian Dropout," will be published in 2013.

In 1969-70 Dr. Chavers was the mainland coordinator for the Alcatraz Occupation. Here is what he says: 

After the acquisition of Alcatraz Island in November 1969, the first phone call we got came from Billy Frank Sr. He called our headquarters at the American Indian Center in San Francisco that first night after he had seen me on television. Frank was the long time leader of the fish-ins in Washington State. The tribes in Washington finally won back their treaty right to hunt and fish, years later, in theBoldt decision (U.S. v. Washington).

“Hey, Dean, what are you guys doing down there?” he asked me in his booming bass voice.

“We’re taking back some Indian land,” I told him. “We’re starting with Alcatraz, but we are going to take back some other places.”

“Good for you,” he said. “It’s about time. A couple of carloads of us are coming down tonight.”

Playlist Tracks: 
Air Date: 
September 5, 2012

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