Ownership Change for Indian Country Today

Published on Mar 26, 2021

Indian Country Today has a new owner. On Friday the National Congress of American Indians, NCAI, transferred its ownership interests in Indian Country Today, LLC to IndiJ Public Media effective March 26, 2021.

Indian Country Today was donated to NCAI by the Oneida Indian Nation in October 2017. The news organization operated as an independent limited liability company owned by NCAI. Now Indian Country Today will operate as an independent company owned by IndiJ Public Media, an Arizona nonprofit corporation.

“This is an exciting time for Indian Country Today to become fiscally independent and to continue its tradition of an autonomous free press. I have the utmost confidence in Mark Trahant’s ability to successfully lead this new media endeavor in its next phase of growth,” said NCAI President Fawn Sharp. “NCAI has supported ICT in its quest for independence the last three and a half years and will continue to be an important ally moving forward in achieving our shared objective of educating the public about American Indian and Alaska Native Tribal Nations.”

“This is a new day for ICT, which has a long history as a premier source of news for and about Indigenous communities, written and produced by Indigenous journalists,” said Karen Michel, Ho Chunk, president and CEO of IndiJ Public Media. “As IndiJ Public Media’s name implies, our focus remains on Indigenous journalism while emphasizing our expansion into broadcasting.”

IndiJ, a combination of the words “Indigenous” and “journalism” and pronounced in-Didge, was incorporated as a nonprofit corporation in Arizona in November 2020 and is awaiting approval of its 501(c)(3) application from the IRS.

“We had no idea how important ICT was to our community until we saw first-hand the connection with our readers and viewers,” said Mark Trahant (Shoshone-Bannock) who was hired in 2017 to serve as the publication’s editor. “More than a century ago the first tribal editor, Cherokee Nation’s Elias Boudinot, called Native news ‘a spacious channel.’ That channel is even more spacious -- and more important -- in this digital age.”

Over the past four decades Indian Country Today has evolved from the weekly Lakota Times, to a national magazine, and now an online daily digital publication and a daily national news broadcast reporting on the ground from – and for – Indian Country about the critical issues impacting Native nations and peoples in the United States and around the globe.

The digital site IndianCountryToday.com reaches about a half million people each month.

A half-hour news broadcast began in March of 2020 as a daily report about the pandemic. It has evolved to a full half hour newscast carried by FNX and many public television stations. The show is produced at Arizona PBS and the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.


About the National Congress of American Indians:

Founded in 1944, the National Congress of American Indians is the oldest, largest and most representative American Indian and Alaska Native organization in the country. NCAI advocates on behalf of tribal governments and communities, promoting strong tribal-federal government-to-government policies, and promoting a better understanding among the general public regarding American Indian and Alaska Native governments, people and rights. For more information, visit www.ncai.org.

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