Tribes Against Coal press event.

Big Wins, Bigger Impact

Indian Country: Reaching one billion readers in 2015

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One billion. That’s just one measurement of the impact of the work of Pyramid’s Indian Country clients. In 2015, our clients celebrated incredible victories and their stories were told far and wide, reaching more than a billion readers.

Our clients formed a 10-tribe alliance to defend treaty rights, protected a sacred site from oil and gas development, educated the public and elected officials about the impact of solar projects on tribal lands, and celebrated the return of tribal lands and jurisdiction.   

We’re proud to have supported the critical work happening in Indian Country with full-service strategic communications, including media strategy, press events, social media and digital campaigns, and government relations. 

[UPDATED] Blackfeet Nation: Saving Badger-Two Medicine from oil and gas

For the past 30 years, the Blackfeet Nation has fought to cancel oil and gas leases in the Badger-Two Medicine area, the sacred home of the tribe’s creation stories and location of many traditional foods and medicines. In April 2015, the Blackfeet led an alliance of tribes, Native organizations, business owners, faith leaders, conservation groups, and Pearl Jam to put pressure on elected officials and to educate the general public about the leases in general and a lease held by Solenex, in particular. Outreach to reporters resulted in more than 50 media stories and a Change.org petition resulted in more than 5,000 letters urging the Department of the Interior and the Department of Agriculture to cancel the leases.

Recently, the U.S. Department of the Interior canceled the Solenex oil and gas drilling lease.

Media Results: 277 million unique readers  |  153 outlets 

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[UPDATED] Lummi Nation: Treaty rights prevail 

The Lummi Nation has fought for years to protect the sacred site of Cherry Point from development of a shipping terminal that would harm its fishing areas and violate treaty rights. The tribe moved the dial on its fight in 2015 with strong messages to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Congress—holding press events and protests in Seattle and D.C. alongside an alliance of tribes across the Pacific Northwest. On May 9, 2016, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers denied the permit at Cherry Point because of the impact it would have on Lummi’s treaty rights. The results of the Corps’ historic decision will resonate throughout Indian Country, as other tribes face similar battles to protect their treaty resources and ways of life. 

Media Results: 1 billion unique readers  |  661 outlets 

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Colorado River Indian Tribes: Saving sacred lands from solar development

Colorado River Indian Tribes’ (CRIT) ancestral lands in the Mojave Desert face desecration and destruction due to utility-scale solar developments. As a result of an intensive and strategic media relations strategy, CRIT gained more than 50 local, state, regional and national news stories, including in the Washington Post and Los Angeles Times, that educated the public about the impact of fast-tracked solar development on tribal lands. 

Media Results: 42 million unique readers  |  13 outlets 

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Yakama Nation: The retrocession of tribal jurisdiction

For decades, the Washington state government has been the acting authority in civil and criminal cases involving members of the Yakama Nation. Since 2012, the tribe has pushed for retrocession, removing state jurisdiction over tribal members in certain cases. On October 19, 2015, Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs Kevin Washburn announced that the Department of the Interior accepted the partial civil and criminal jurisdiction the State of Washington held over the Yakama Nation. It was a crucial step that allows exclusive tribal jurisdiction in certain cases. 

Media Results: 81 million unique readers  |  41 outlets 

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Sealaska Corporation: Returning lands to Native ownership

Seventy-thousand acres of the Tongass National Forest were returned to the Tlingit, Haida and Tsmishian people of Southeast Alaska when the Sealaska land bill passed in Congress in January 2015. Efforts to pass the bill began in 2004 and, during the last 10 years, more than 1,000 versions of the bill were drafted. Pyramid  was proud to partner with Sealaska to provide strategic counsel and communications support on everything from outreach strategy to storytelling materials over the course of the effort to build national support for the land bill. Congratulations to everyone at Sealaska who worked tirelessly on behalf of tribal member shareholders.

Thank you to our clients for an amazing 2015. We can’t wait to see what 2016 brings!