Recognizing the emerging 40 under 40
By Lailani Upham
National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development 2010 Under
40 recipient, Casey Lozar stands proudly with his father, Steve Lozar,
CSKT Polson Tribal Council Representative; and his mother, Karol Lozar,
Polson school district educator; at the annual Indians Progress in
Business awards event last month at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in
Albuquerque, New Mexico. (Courtesy photo)
MESA, Ariz. — The National Center for American Indian Enterprise
Development announced last month the recipients of the 2010 Native
American 40 Under 40; and former local members Casey Lozar and Quanah
Spencer were recognized for demonstrating impressive achievements in
The Native American 40 Under 40 recognition was
incorporated as part of the National Center for American Indian
Enterprise Development's 40th anniversary. The 40 under 40 recognizes
Indian leaders under 40 years of age who have demonstrated outstanding
leadership, initiative and dedication in their businesses, communities
and to Indian country.
Casey Lozar, an enrolled member of the Confederated Salish and
Kootenai Tribes and Director of Corporate and Tribal Development for
the American Indian College Fund said, "I felt as if I wasn't worthy of
such a recognition. There are so many young Natives committed to
strengthening our communities and addressing some of the issues that
plague urban and reservation Indians. There are so many to choose from.
Nonetheless, I am humbled to have been recognized alongside other
emerging natives like Notah Begay III, Antonia Gonzales and Del
Laverdure. I was taught that leadership isn't possessive; it isn't
something that you personally own. Rather, leadership is a combination
of experiences and knowledge that you have borrowed from role models,
elders and family and have chosen to share with others."
Lozar was born and raised on the Flathead Reservation and has
been involved with Indian education as a schoolteacher, coach and
tribal cultural camp leader. He currently directs a team that develops
partnerships with tribal governments and Fortune 500 corporations for
the American Indian College Fund.
Lozar received his undergraduate degree from Dartmouth College
and completed his graduate work at Harvard University. He is currently
pursuing his MBA at the University of Colorado at Denver. Lozar resides
in Lafayette, Colo. with his wife, Reagen who Lozar says keeps him in
Quanah Spencer, Yakima tribal member and attorney at
Seattle's Williams Kastner law firm, a firm with a nationally prominent
tribal law practice, was also featured in Forbes business magazine as
one of the recipients for the NCAIED 2010 "Native American 40 Under 40"
Spencer received a B.A. degree in Political Science from Fort
Lewis College and completed his law degree from University of Colorado
School or Law in 2003. Spencer resides in the Seattle area with his
wife, Gwen Lankford Spencer.
Prior to joining the Seattle law
firm, Spencer worked as a public policy lawyer for the Yakama Nation,
Coeur d'Alene Tribe and the National Congress of American Indians.
serving with the National Congress of American Indians, Spencer
represented the organization's constituent tribal governments on a vast
array of legal and policy issues including: trust reform, legislative
settlement of the Cobell litigation, homeland security, law
enforcement, natural resources, gaming and other issues. During this
time Spencer also provided strategic advice and counsel to tribal
governments on the Energy Policy Act of 2005. He was active in
submitting the policy papers to Congress that supported tribal
sovereignty in approving tribal consent to rights of way.
Spencer provided consultation with the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes in the past.
want to continue to recognize the hard work of a diverse group of young
Native American leaders," said Eric S. Trevan, NCAIED president and
CEO. "This year's elite group includes community organizers, elected
officials, policy leaders, entrepreneurs and business professionals who
exemplify the spirit of progress in Indian country."
The annual Indians Progress in Business awards event where
Lozar and Spencer were recognized is presented by Raytheon, the oldest
and known as one of the most prestigious Native American recognition
events honoring Natives and businesses that support business
development across Indian country.
Other award recognition
include: the Jay Silverheels Achievement award, the First American
Corporation Leadership award, the First American Entrepreneurship award
and the American Indian Fellowship in Business Student Scholarship
Being raised on Flathead, Lozar calls the community a
pretty diverse place. "We have highly successful Indian people from our
confederacy as well as other Native leaders. There are knowledgeable
elders and motivated youth. Our Native women are smarter and more
determined than most in Indian Country. The non-Indian community brings
a sense of passion and pride to the work they do on the reservation.
The differing religious beliefs, dissimilar political inclinations and
varied natural terrain make the social and cultural fabric of the
reservation an exciting place with endless potential. The variety in
the community has made me appreciate diversity, stay positive and want
to work towards a brighter future for our people."