Showing posts from March, 2023

Sacred Stories: Indigenous-led Conservation of Lands and Waterways

On March 7, 2023, the Center for American Progress, Native Americans in Philanthropy, and the Biodiversity Funders Group hosted a panel of storytellers discussing Indigenous-led conservation of lands and waterways. I gave brief remarks, welcoming our guests to our office. I'm posting them here for posterity. The video of the event is embedded above and linked here . Hello and welcome to the Sacred Stories! My name is Angelo Villagomez, I’m Chamorro from the Island of Saipan, and on behalf of the Center for American Progress, Native Americans in Philanthropy, and the Biodiversity Funders Group, I’m so glad you could join us today for this special occasion. We are here to celebrate and honor the stories of our ancestors, our cultures, and our lands. Stories that connect us to each other and to the Earth. Before we start, I’d just like to acknowledge some of the leaders who have joined us today. [Calls out VIPs] We are here to acknowledge and support the efforts of Indigen

An Obituary for Cinta Kaipat

Obituaries on Saipan tend to focus on listing the recently deceased's parents, siblings, and other close relations, without providing much more information about a person's life.  Maybe some day I'll write something about the deeper meaning in that, but today I'm mourning for my friend Cinta.  I want the world to know what she meant to me, and what she meant to our community.  Although these things don't typically get written for our people, I'm breaking with convention and writing an obituary for my friend Cinta. Cinta was born on Agrigan and grew up with a strong connection to her culture and heritage.  She was a passionate and courageous advocate for Indigenous Refaluwasch and Chamorro rights and environmental protection in the Northern Mariana Islands. She dedicated her life to fighting for justice, dignity, and sovereignty for her people and her land. Cinta overcame social and economic obstacles and obtained her BA from DePaul University and her JD from the