Sovereignty Run 2022

NCAI 20th Anniversary Sovereignty Run

In 2002, Tribal Nations, leaders, and Indian Country advocates embarked upon a cross-country run from Washington state to Washington, DC to speak up against harmful Supreme Court precedents restricting tribal jurisdictions. Now, twenty years later, the National Congress of American Indians is reviving this powerful journey to meet the call of today's pressing challenges to tribal sovereignty. The first week of October will mark the beginning of a 1,785-mile relay from Oklahoma to California geared to unite Tribal Nations, partners, and allies in heightening awareness and support of tribal sovereignty on a national level. This Sovereignty Run will be led by Fawn Sharp, the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) President and Vice-President of the Quinault Indian Nation, and will include participants from Tribal Nations, Native organizations, and other partners.

Why Run for Tribal Sovereignty?

Twenty years ago, the mission was to speak out against harmful precedents restricting tribal jurisdiction. This year, organizers were moved to action by another Supreme Court ruling negatively impacting tribal sovereignty—Castro-Huerta v. Oklahoma. In its ruling, the Court held that “the Federal Government and the State have concurrent jurisdiction to prosecute crimes committed by non-Indians against Indians in Indian country” which strikes against tribal sovereignty and jurisdiction to protect tribal citizens. The consequences of the decision for Tribal Nations, the federal government, and states will take time to unravel. Inspired by the recent history-making reinstatement of athletic great Jim “Bright Path” Thorpe's (Sac and Fox Nation and Potawatomi) Olympic gold medals, Tribal Nations will once again run to raise awareness for sovereign rights. Oklahoma was chosen as the starting point this year in honor of Jim Thorpe who hailed from Oklahoma, and in response to the Supreme Court's decision that had a significant impact on Tribal Nations there.

Follow the Path

*Dates and locations are subject to change
Total Miles: 1787
October 3Cherokee Nation, OK
October 4Muscogee Nation, OK
October 5Sac & Fox Nation, OK
October 6Oklahoma City, OK
October 7Cheyenne Arapaho, OK
New Mexico
October 10Albuquerque, NM
October 11Grants, NM
October 12Gallup, NM
October 14Inter-Tribal Council Of Arizona, AZ
October 15Gila River, AZ
October 16Colorado River Res., AZ
October 17Palm Springs, CA
October 19San Diego, CA
October 23Olympic Colosseum, Los Angeles, CA
October 24Bakersfield, CA
October 25Fresno, CA
October 27Amah Mutsun Nation, CA
October 28San Leandro, CA
October 29San Francisco, CA
October 31Sacramento, CA