“When we talk about land, land is part of who we are. It’s a mixture of our blood, our past, our current, and our future. We carry our ancestors in us, and they’re around us. As you all do.”
Mary Lyons (Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe)
September 21, 2020, is Sovereignty Day for the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians. To mark the date, 7GAE has released a land acknowledgement for the firm’s Kalamazoo headquarters. A land acknowledgement is a formal statement outlining and illuminating ongoing Indigenous presence that recognizes settler-colonial legacies of violence and land expropriation. We acknowledge the following:
We collectively recognize the office of Seven Generations Architecture + Engineering is sited on land historically occupied by the Ojibwe, Odawa, and Potawatomi Nations. We acknowledge and honor the ancestral, traditional, and contemporary land of the Three Fires Confederacy, their Indigenous peoples, and their continued Sovereignty.
Our office at 600 E. Michigan Avenue in Kalamazoo, MI, occupies the ancestral, traditional, and contemporary Lands of the Anishinaabek. More specifically, it sits on the traditional land of the Match-e-be-nash-she-wish and his people. By offering this land acknowledgement, we wish to affirm Indigenous Sovereignty and declare that we will work to hold all those employed by and involved with the firm accountable to the needs of American Indian and Indigenous peoples.
September 21, 2020, is the 27th annual Sovereignty Day for the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians. On that date in 1994, President Bill Clinton signed legislation signifying federal recognition of the tribe as a sovereign nation and reaffirming what the Pokagon Band had long known to be true. Each year, the day serves as an opportunity to remember the long struggle that preceded that recognition. To learn more about Sovereignty Day, visit the website of the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians.
Seven Generations Architecture + Engineering is owned by Mno-Bmadsen, the non-gaming independent investment instrumentality of the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians, and encourages all to recognize the historic and ongoing ties that tribal nations have with land in Kalamazoo, in Michigan, and throughout the United States. However, recognition and acknowledgement are just part of the equation. It is also critical to build relationships with living Indigenous communities. The 7GAE land acknowledgement is representative of the firm’s ongoing commitment to Indigenous communities and tribal sovereignty.
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