Executive Director, Minnesota Indigenous Women’s Society
Beth O’Keefe is the Executive Director of the Minnesota Indigenous Women’s Society (MIWS). She has served as the director since 2014 and is an enrolled member of the Lower Sioux Indian Community.
Ms. O’Keefe is committed to what Dr. Clifford Cunku describes as WoDakota, a lifetime of learning Dakota Wicohan; traditional lifeways and uses her knowledge to support Relatives returning to traditional ways of being.
MIWS works closely with three Tribal Coalitions, Mending the Sacred Hoop (MSH), Minnesota Indian Women’s Sexual Assault Coalition (MIWSAC) and Native Women’s Society of Great Plains (NWSGP). MIWS is a board member of the Native Women’s Society of the Great Plains and Ms. O’Keffe has served on the executive committee from 2016 -2021 as a member of eboard which assists the Executive Director with day to day operation of the coalition.
As a 2019 graduate of the National Tribal Trial College (NTTC), Ms. O’Keefe credits her experience for allowing her to better support relatives living in or around the Upper and Lower Sioux Tribal communities. Additionally, NTTC helped Ms. O’Keefe identify resources and legal remedies to address the legal issues which are paramount in Public Law 280 states like her home of Minnesota.
As a member of the NTTC team, she supports the Advocates in the program by using her talents as an actor to role play during mock trial. She is another face to offer support and encouragement to her allies working in their communities.