Mnicoujou Lakota, Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe of South Dakota
Takayla Lightfield is pursuing her Public Health Training Certificate for American Indian Health by attending Winter and Summer Institutes at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She most recently took classes during our January institute that attracted a record 55 scholars from 15 different tribes.
When not studying in Baltimore, this busy wife, mom, and doula serves as the American Indian Cancer Foundation’s Prevention and Policy Coordinator in Minneapolis, MN. Ms. Lightfield recently presented a Healthy Beverage Toolkit for Native American Communities: Putting Policy into Action, written by the staff at the American Indian Cancer Foundation, at the Healthy Beverage Summit organized by Notah Begay III Foundation.
"As part of the Healthy Native Food Initiative, we provide technical assistance to tribes and American Indian and Alaska Native (AIAN) organizations to help them reclaim traditional food ways by practicing tribal sovereignty and implementing policy change at tribal, organizational, community, and individual levels." "We also develop culturally relevant resources for AIAN communities to use when doing health Native food work, such as toolkits and infographics."
What drives Takayla to study public health?
“The effects of colonization can still be seen today in poverty-ridden areas, which include many reservations and urban Native communities,” said Ms. Lightfield. “I want to work toward making these communities, including my own, healthy and thriving again.”
- BA IN American Indian Studies, Psychology, and Liberal Arts for the Human Services.