Red Lake Nation News - Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

Mendota Dakota tribal members to petition for federal recognition as sovereign nation


Shari L. Gross • Star Tribune

Tommy Tomahawk, tribal relations, and Mendota Mdewakanton Dakota Tribal Community chairperson Sharon Lennartson sat in the shade in front of a sweat lodge for a portrait.

Members of the Mendota Mdewakanton Dakota Tribal Community plan to apply for recognition by the federal government as a sovereign nation, a designation that could give them a seat on the Minnesota Indian Affairs Council and possibly help them obtain land.

The move also would earn the Mendota Dakota community respect from other tribes, said tribal chairwoman Sharon Lennartson.

"We are still here and we always will be," said Lennartson, also known as Good Thunder Woman. "We will fight for our rights."


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