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Colleen Echohawk


Kithehaki Band/Pawnee/Upper Athabascan

Colleen Echohawk embodies a lifelong commitment to community advocacy and leadership, with over two decades of dedicated service to Seattle's marginalized populations and Native communities nationwide. As an Indigenous woman, small business owner, and community organizer, Colleen draws upon her diverse experiences to spearhead initiatives for justice and reconciliation. Proudly belonging to the Kithehaki Band of the Pawnee Nation and the Upper Athabascan people of Mentasta Lake, Colleen has made Seattle her home for over twenty years.

A catalyst for change, Colleen has forged successful coalitions addressing crucial issues such as housing, homelessness, racial justice, sustainability, and public safety in Seattle. During her tenure at Chief Seattle Club over seven years, she orchestrated impactful advocacy efforts benefiting Native-led groups, leading to significant reforms in the homelessness system and housing development practices.

As Executive Director at the Chief Seattle Club, Colleen was instrumental in generating nearly $100 million for new affordable housing and implementing highly effective rapid rehousing programs. At the Seattle Community Police Commission, she collaborated with communities to combat systemic racism within the criminal justice system, fostering progress in reimagining public safety.

As CEO of Eighth Generation, a Native lifestyle brand, Colleen leverages her expertise to propel the business globally, showcasing authentic Native-designed art and home goods on an international scale.

Recognized for her exceptional contributions, Colleen has received numerous awards, including the King County Martin Luther King Jr. Medal of Distinguished Service and Seattle Magazine's acknowledgment as one of the city's most influential figures.