We are honored to share more exciting news from our staff and leadership! Through this year, our staff and board have worked to envision and prepare for a new season of growth for the Native American Food Sovereignty Alliance’s work. It has been a conscious and exciting effort to open two leadership positions to our community, and we are thrilled to announce the selection of a new Executive Director to lead NAFSA. Please join us in welcoming Lilian Hill!

Lilian is Hopi from the village of Kykotsmovi, and brings to her new role decades of work and contributions to the Indigenous food sovereignty movement in the Southwest region and beyond. She founded the Hopi Tutskwa Permaculture Institute in 2004 as a way to develop community leadership and provide opportunities for the Hopi community to develop sustainable solutions to the problems that exist on the reservation, and has led the institute since as Executive Director. In 2001, Lilian also founded the Black Mesa Water Coalition, an organization working to address energy and water exploitation on the Navajo and Hopi Reservations. Lilian has traveled to Italy, Africa, India, Tajikistan, New Zealand, and Mexico learning, sharing her work, and promoting Indigenous self-determination. She has studied at the North American School of Natural Building, received her Bachelor of Science from Northern Arizona University (NAU) in Applied Indigenous Studies, and is currently pursuing her Master’s Degree in Sustainable Communities also at NAU. In 2015 Lilian was awarded the Agricultural Humanitarian of Year Award by the Justin Willie Foundation, and has received fellowships from the Skoll Foundation as well as the Castanea Fellowship. Lilian joined NAFSA’s Leadership Council last fall.

Lilian says, “I am both honored and humbled to accept my new role as Executive Director of the Native American Food Sovereignty Alliance (NAFSA). This position will provide me with opportunities to support, engage, and build relationships with dedicated Indigenous leaders representing various sectors of the Indigenous Food Sovereignty movement including social entrepreneurs, activists, innovators, chefs, farmers, gatherers, fishers, hunters, ranchers, pastoralists, and land stewards who are committed to Indigenous self-determination and collective liberation. I believe that leadership is an essential element in building strong, stable, and culturally sustainable Indigenous Nations and communities. Traditions of leadership development continue to thrive today in our Indigenous Nations and are amplified by emerging organizations such as the Native American Food Sovereignty Alliance (NAFSA). I look forward to using the synergy of my experiences as a driver to support the re-emergence of thriving, resilient, dynamic, and restored Indigenous food systems for the current and future generations.” 

At this time, we would also like to uplift our utmost appreciation for Diane Wilson, who has brilliantly led NAFSA as Executive Director up to this point. We are tremendously grateful for her guidance and leadership over the past few years through the establishment of our organization, and for her instrumental support in stewarding this thoughtful and joyful leadership transition.

“Finding the right leader at the right time is one of the opportunities in a successful leadership transition,” Diane shares. “We are so blessed and honored to welcome Lilian Hill as the new Executive Director. She brings the vision, skills and experience that NAFSA needs as we expand our programs to support Native communities in strengthening their sovereign food systems.” 

We look forward to sharing our journey and work with you as we blossom into this exciting new stage for our organization. On behalf of our leadership and staff community, we extend our gratitude for your continued support of NAFSA. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to info@nativefoodalliance.org.