Michelle Schenandoah is an inspirational speaker, writer, thought leader and traditional member of the Onʌyota’:aka (Oneida) Nation Wolf Clan of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy. She presented as a spiritual advisor to the Pope with the First Nations Delegation at the Vatican that prompted his apology regarding residential schools. She is the founder of the nonprofit Rematriation, dedicated to uplifting Indigenous women’s voices.
Raised in a family of traditional leadership, she carries the values and responsibilities of being Haudenosaunee throughout her life. Inspired by her grandmothers who led generations of Oneida Nation land claims, Michelle carries her ancestors’ passion to rematriate her people’s lands and bring about the truthful telling of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy’s global influence on modern democracy and women’s rights.
Michelle’s life experiences paved the way for her to found Rematriation in 2016. As a traditional member of the Longhouse, a trained lawyer and a visionary for change, Michelle creates space for Indigenous voices to be honored fully with light and love. Most recently, as founder of Rematriation, Michelle directed and produced the Rematriation films: An Indigenous Response to #MeToo and the 10-part series, Indigenous Women’s Voices, with Mohawk director, Katsitsionni Fox.
Through her storytelling as a filmmaker, writer and speaker, Michelle creates safe spaces to share tools and resources that she has learned from her own healing journey and lived experiences. She is co-founder, owner and principal at Indigenous Concepts Consulting with her husband, Neal Powless, she helps non-Indigenous businesses and media companies develop their own organizational best practices through an Indigenous lens.
Currently, Michelle is a Soros Open Societies Equality Fellow and a MIT SOLVE Indigenous Communities Fellow.