Monica Rattling Hawk
Native Nations Liaison , Northern Great Plains Program
Monica is a citizen of the Oglala Lakota Nation, an aspiring Unci (grandmother), and resides on Quiver Hill, the northeast corner of the Pine Ridge Reservation, where she happily toils in the soil, harvesting medicines, and enjoying the challenges of walking in two worlds.
Monica, who is walking a journey of discovery of traditional knowledge and ecosystem relationships from an Indigenous perspective, joined the WWF-Northern Great Plains program in 2017. In her role, she leads outreach efforts on Pine Ridge regarding the future of the South Unit of Badlands National Park (locally known as the Strong Hold). This land is both owned and co-managed by the tribe and the National Park Service. Monica is a founding and board member of the Buffalo Nations Grasslands Alliance (BNGA)—a non-profit organization that is working to ensure the sustainability of Native-led grasslands and wildlife conservation, ensuring that this important ecosystem and its wildlife will continue to exist for generations to come. BNGA is working to accomplish its goals by creating sustainable financing opportunities, engaging local communities and leadership, and connecting conservation with Indigenous lifeways. Monica is also an advocate of the Buffalo Treaty, which invited the Oglala Sioux Tribe to be a signatory. She continues to be engaged as a working group member by tackling issues that impact Native nations and their relative, the buffalo. In addition, Monica explores topics like “food as a medicine” with her community through education on planting, harvesting, and preserving locally grown and harvested foods. She participates in other areas of public service as the President of the Crazy Horse School Board and is a founding member of a local women’s society that focuses on traditional, ethics, thoughts, and philosophy.
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Native Nations Liaison