Our Emerging Leader Award is granted to applicants who demonstrate a deep commitment to addressing gender and sexual violence against Indigenous people, who are utilizing their studies to lead ongoing efforts to raise awareness, support survivors, or prevent future violence. Each Emerging Leader Award recipient is given a $500 honorarium. 

 

JESSICA

SMITH

Jessica is a member of the Bois Forte Band of The Minnesota Chippewa Tribe. She is currently studying Legal Studies and First Nations Studies at The University of Wisconsin-Superior. Jessica is a Dean's List student and is a member of UWS Native Student Support Organization. She is a McNair Scholar researching human trafficking in Indian Country and MMIWG. Jessica is a survivor and is using her education to bring awareness to the issues that Native people are experiencing. She is using her voice and her education to support other survivors. To bring light to issues all too often left in the dark. Jessica believes through her strength and resilience that she has overcome everything meant to destroy her and she is using that strength to uplift and be a source of strength for her people.