So far, we’ve recognized two executive directors, two attorneys and two behind-the-scenes problem-solvers as part of our 20th Anniversary Superhero Awards. Today, we are focusing on the future. We’re recognizing two leaders who have already made an enormous difference in their communities and who are helping to ensure an even brighter future.
Jeff Ackley Jr., Sokaogon Chippewa Community tribal administrator and Housing Authority executive director — Next 20 Housing Superhero
The Next 20 award is for a dynamic housing young professional. Jeff Ackley is someone who brings new ideas and a fresh perspective to the task of providing affordable housing.
Jeff doesn’t take no for an answer and continues to work to overcome obstacles and provide housing for his fellow tribal members. In addition to managing a significant stock of rental and homeowner housing, he has successfully won three Low Income Housing Tax Credit project awards in his home state of Wisconsin to encourage tribal members to return and live in their community. He balances his many obligations as a community leader, executive director of a housing authority, president of his local school board, and owner of several small businesses with determination and persistence. He’s always ready to get down to business with a joke and a smile.
Dakota Cole, undersecretary of treasury for the Chickasaw Nation — Next 20 Economic Development Superhero
This award is for someone who represents the future of his community’s economy. Dakota Cole has helped spark positive economic change in his community. Dakota wears many hats: He is a CPA, a rancher, undersecretary of treasury for the Chickasaw Nation and managing director for Chickasaw Nation Community Development Endeavor. Dakota plays a key role in the future of his nation as well as economic development across Indian Country. In addition to a wide array of responsibilities serving Chickasaw Nation citizens, Dakota will be deploying a $20 million New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) allocation across all of Indian Country in the coming year.
We congratulate Jeff and Dakota and look forward to seeing what they accomplish in the next 20 years!
Have you joined in our #20YearsEquals conversation yet? See who has here.