[RNLD] ILI Tribute to Darrell Kipp, Blackfeet
mflorey at RNLD.ORG
Mon Nov 25 21:48:22 UTC 2013
*Native Language Network
*eNewsletter of the Indigenous Language Institute*
*November 25, 2013*
*ILI Tribute to Darrell Robes Kipp, Blackfeet*
Darrell Kipp has left us. Indian Country has lost an outspoken leader of
Total Immersion Tribal Schools and dedicated Native man who championed
heritage languages and culture. As co-founder of the Piegan Institute and
the Nizipushwahsin, the Blackfeet total immersion school in Browning,
Montana, he became one of the most persuasive voices for concentrated
heritage language acquisition by total immersion.
The school he co-founded, Nizipushwahsin, was one of the first Native
schools in Indian Country, which was fully devoted to the Blackfeet
language and included instruction in their language. The challenges of
creating this school were many, including the constant search for
operational funds. This school has been a guide to other Indian communities
for nearly 30 years.
Darrell was a friend to the Indigenous Language Institute (ILI) since ILI
was formed 15 years ago. He encouraged our work and was always there as a
mentor when asked. His dedication to his home community and willingness to
stay home where his education could be put to the best use is an honor and
inspiration to Indian Country.
Darrell was an educated man; M.Ed. '75, Harvard University. He was a Viet
Nam Veteran. With his passing, he has left a legacy of fundamental activism
in Indian education and the critical need to preserve and use the languages
of our ancestors to become fully educated. He has also left us the
challenge and opportunity to carry on his work in total Immersion in Indian
Country schools and communities.
He said of his work: "Never ask permission to do your work, Never debate
your decision to your language, and Do it now!!!" These and other
admonitions have inspired not only the Blackfeet but anyone who heard him
speak or read his writing.
We will miss your strong voice for the people, Darrell, especially our
Walk on, Brother!!
On behalf of the Indigenous Language Institute, Board of Directors and
Jerry L. Hill, Oneida, President, Board of Directors of Indigenous Language
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