Get to Know the 2018 Gen-I Career Success Fellows

The Center for Native American Youth (CNAY) is proud to announce the 2018 cohort of Gen-I Career Success Fellows! These six Indigenous leaders will join CNAY and the Native American Finance Officers Association (NAFOA) in New Orleans for networking, leadership development, and career opportunities at the annual NAFOA conference in April. Prior to the start of the conference, they’ll participate in a one-day, pre-conference leadership summit designed specifically for Native youth interested in finance, business and economic development in Indian Country.

2018 marks the second year of the Gen-I Career Success Fellowship. The fellowship was created by CNAY and NAFOA as part of the Generation Indigenous movement’s mission to decrease barriers and increase opportunity for Native youth. This year’s Fellows were selected based on their exemplary performance in the Native American Career Success Academy, the strength of their applications, and potential to take full advantage of direct interactions with influencers in business and economic development fields.

Read below to get to know the Fellows, and learn more about their interests by following @genindigenous and #GenIFellows on Twitter and Instagram. If you’re attending the NAFOA conference and want to meet the Fellows in person, email us to connect with our team. Want these updates to come to your inbox? Sign up to get info on CNAY programming.

Joshua Bertalotto is an enrolled member of the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana and a senior at Johns Hopkins University, where he studies Sociology and Social Policy. He has interned with the Democratic National Committee, National Congress of American Indians, United South and Eastern Tribes, and the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs. Joshua wants to use his experiences and education to strengthen the federal government’s responsibility to tribes. He hopes to study policy in graduate school, and support other youth in his community in becoming more active in tribal politics.
Jessica Bradby is an enrolled member of the Pamunkey Indian Tribe of Virginia. She studies sociology at Fort Lewis College in Durango, CO, and hopes to practice counseling founded in Indigenous knowledge, beliefs, and practices. Jessica plans to earn a graduate degree in social work, and wants to create a safe space for her community to address issues from an Indigenous perspective.
Jamie Cruz is an enrolled member of the Squaxin Island Tribe located in the Pacific Northwest. She is surrounded by her family and is proud to be descended from ancestors who signed the Medicine Creek Treaty. Jamie hopes to work for future generations by helping Squaxin youth gain access to the tools needed to reach their goals in education and beyond. She believes that by investing in her community, she can help them rise above and balance the two worlds Native Americans live in.
Joshua Emerson is a citizen of the Navajo Nation, a Marine veteran, and an economics student at Fort Lewis College in Durango, CO. Joshua wants to become a leader in Native American economic policy, and economic development. He plans to go into banking after graduation to specifically deal with projects across Indian Country.
Jorge Martinez is Mazahua (Jñatrjo) and Mixtec (Ñuu Savi) and serves as the cultural programs coordinator at the Library Foundation of Los Angeles, the nonprofit sector of the L.A. Public Library. His work centers on highlighting Indigenous narratives through art institutions to create spaces of healing and affirmation for Native nations. He has been a part of the “Visualizing Language: Oaxaca in L.A.” and “Rigo 23: Ripples Become Waves” exhibits at the Central Library and the Main Museum, respectively. He studies Science and Society at Brown University and plans to pursue graduate studies in History of Science. Jorge hopes to continue his involvement within the museum to bridge Indigenous communities and institutional resources through exhibits, public programming’s, and collections.
Jordan Oglesby is Diné and spends her time between the Navajo Nation and Albuquerque, NM. She has always had in interest in business, and majored in finance as an undergraduate at the University of New Mexico. Jordan minored in Native American studies, and because of this is now pursuing her interests in federal Indian law and tribal economic development as a law student at UNM’s School of Law. Jordan hopes to become a practicing attorney for both business law and federal Indian law to help Native business owners flourish. She also hopes to open her own business in her community.