“If I Have Seen Further, It Is by Standing on the Shoulders of Giants.”

Some people find themselves in awe with celebrities and the lives they lead. I am in awe by American Indian leaders and activists whose decision to stand up and oppose what is wrong – with their voices and their suffering as well as their very lives – fighting for the change in the way all Americans live and think in their lives, maybe when the term “Diversity” includes the American Indian and serves us as well as it has served other races.

I have always been aware of the sacrifices that were made and the lives given, the opportunities that were lost to them for speaking out, the ostracizing of people for standing up and agreeing, the possibilities of their families diminished, all so that I could attach the title of Executive Director of the American Indian Enterprise & Business Council to my lowly name. I was reminded of these sacrifices when Russell Means, Wilma Mankiller and most recently Elizabeth Marie Tall Chief and an extremely humble man Jonathon Winters traveled home.

All around me are people who live life large. People who do epic things. They wake up and create. They write. They act. They produce. They blog. They speak out and they bring awareness of injustices to the forefront and expose them for what they are. They point to the bad and the good without fear, without a care as to how they will be seen or treated because they did not take the popular opinion. They create the lives they want to live. They are the change they want to see in the world. They work for themselves. They work for others with their own rules. They travel shamelessly. They raise families. They live life like no sky exists.

To Quote Sir Isaac Newton:

“If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.”


John JH OBrien

Executive Director