Greetings everyone, I hope that this message finds you, your family and community doing well, during this holiday season. As you all know, this year feels very different from any other, because we were not able to hold our Christmas dances, traditional doings and come together with our loved ones. Given this unprecedented situation we find ourselves in, I am amazed at how Pueblo people have taken it upon themselves to sing and dance in their homes and share videos of those activities with others through social media to remind us of things that make us uniquely “Pueblo”. I am thankful that we have social media platforms to keep us connected.

As this year comes to an end, I am reflecting on my work with the Chamiza Foundation. As a small family foundation, we were able to increase the amount of support to our Pueblo communities and to even provide additional emergency relief support to Pueblo artists and farmers. I am tremendously thankful to the Phillip’s Family and to the Chamiza Foundation board for making the decision to provide extra support to our Pueblo’s. Throughout this year, I have had the privilege of working with other strong Indigenous philanthropic partners while being part of the Native American Relief Fund Advisory Committee. This advisory committee has worked hard to provide support to all 23 tribes in New Mexico. I feel extremely honored to have been asked to be part of this incredible group. Also, throughout the year, I was a participant in meetings that were hosted by New Mexico First that discussed Food, Water, Hunger & Agriculture. Through these meetings I was able to make great connections to other non-profits who wanted to learn more about the Chamiza Foundation, and I was continuously informed of work being done for New Mexico native communities. Additionally, this year, I have chosen to continue meeting with the New Mexico Agriculture Group which is led by the Thornburg Foundation. This group has allowed me to learn more about the New Mexico food system. It has been extremely enlightening, and I look forward to our continued work and collaborations in 2021. And lastly, some of my time was dedicated to my duties as a board member for the New Mexico Association of Grantmakers (NMAG). This year, NMAG went through several changes that will benefit the entire New Mexico social sector. I am hopeful that these changes will benefit Indigenous non-profits, for-profits, consultants and funders in the long run. All in all, this year has been very busy, extremely productive and I was happy to contribute to work being done in the philanthropic arena in one way or another. I look forward to nourishing the relationships that have been discovered and developed throughout the year.

As a reminder, we will be accepting applications for Chamiza Foundation support in 2021. Our first deadline will be on Friday, February 12, 2021, for both Traditional Applications and Emergency Relief Support Applications. We will be accepting applications that focus on our traditional priority areas such as language preservation, traditional architecture, sustainable agriculture, traditional arts & crafts, tribal & ancestral history, oral histories & storytelling, youth education & leadership, intercultural/intergenerational exchange and education. We will also be accepting applications for Pueblo Emergency COVID-19 Relief Support. We will fund as much as possible given our limited capacity as a small family foundation. Our foundation has set the following grant making priorities for relief efforts:

  • Food, medical supplies and personal items
  • Water
  • Community and Individual Relief and Recovery Needs
  • Internet access and connectivity
  • Other needs and expenses directly related to the COVID-19 pandemic

Eligibility-The Chamiza Foundation invites proposals from the following:

  • New Mexico’s 19 Pueblo Indian tribal communities
  • Ysleta del Sur Pueblo, El Paso, Texas, member of the All Pueblo Council of Governors and the 20th Pueblo
  • Pueblo community leaders
  • Non-Pueblo organizations that serve Pueblo communities. These entities must submit a letter of support from the Governor of the Pueblo as evidence that the community has requested their involvement

Applications open January 12, 2021-Deadline February 12, 2021

There are three ways that you can apply 1) You can complete your application online through our website 2) You can email your application to or 3) You can send your completed application directly to me at . Please remember that I am available if you want to talk about a project idea/concept. I can also review your application before the deadline to ensure that you have included all required information.

Please let me know if you have any questions about applying to the Chamiza Foundation for project support or emergency relief funding. Wishing everyone a safe and happy new year!


Dr. Amanda J. Montoya



     Indigenous Artists & Entrepreneurs Showcase

Artwork courtesy of DeAnna Autumn Leaf Suazo-Taos Pueblo/Navajo 

As mentioned in a previous newsletter, we here at the Chamiza Foundation were very concerned with Pueblo artists and entrepreneurs due to the “Public Health Order” that was put in place by the New Mexico Governor and the Pueblo closures. Due to these circumstances, my friend and I decided to create a website to try and help Indigenous artists and entrepreneurs with the marketing and promotion of their art, products and services. The website is called “Indigenous Artists & Entrepreneurs Showcase”. This website was scheduled to showcase Indigenous artists & entrepreneurs from Nov. 23rd, 2020 until December 31st, 2020. Our website has proven to be useful to artists and entrepreneurs. Therefore, we have decided to keep it going after the holidays. We still have plenty of space for additional artists & entrepreneurs who would like to advertise their art, products and services on this website. I hope you will take the time to explore the website and connect with our featured artists and entrepreneurs. The website address is: If you know of any artists or entrepreneurs who would like to be placed on our website, please have them contact me at or they can call me at 505-216-2140.



Below you will find brief reports from 15 pueblos that received Chamiza Foundation: Emergency Relief Funding for Artists and Farmers this past summer. Our Pueblo communities are doing phenomenal work to practice food sovereignty and support our Pueblo artists. 


Acoma Pueblo (Farm)-Aaron Lowden, Acoma Program Coordinator, Ancestral Lands: We have used some of the funds in preparation for the fall planting time in our passive solar cold frame. At the beginning of October, we brought on 4 young people in Acoma to aid with growing fresh produce for our elders. So far, we have purchased drip irrigation supplies, organic compost and soil amendments, and large quantities of seed we don’t have access to such as carrots, turnips, beets, chard, spinach and lettuce. We also plan to use the remainder for a small processing station that will allow us to clean the produce for good food safety standards. Right now, we are using the senior center’s kitchen which isn’t the best space for that. We are very thankful and have been putting the funding to good use for the fall/winter season.


Acoma Pueblo (Artists)- Governor Brian Vallo: In response to the impact of public health orders resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic at both the national and state levels, the Pueblo of Acoma tribal government recognized the need to respond to loss of income among “traditional entrepreneurs” or artists, many of whose primary income is generated by sales of art. As such, the Pueblo established the Artist Relief Fund. The generous contributions of non-profit organizations, including the Chamiza Foundation, offers the relief fund program an opportunity to expand its service to artists by providing additional support and technical assistance with website development, on-line art sales, and the creation of a virtual Acoma artists market later this year. The program will also purchase and provide shipping materials to artists and offer any emergency financial support to artists during the pandemic.  The Pueblo of Acoma is grateful to the Chamiza Foundation for their thoughtfulness and generosity.


Pueblo de Cochiti (Artists)-Michael Quintana, Pueblo de Cochiti Tribal Administrator: The donation graciously afforded by the Chamiza Foundation for tribal artists that have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic has been accepted by the Pueblo. The Tribal Council/Governors approved a financial support/relief based on individual need, this was the best we could do within the US Treasury guidelines to provide this financial relief based on criteria of 18-yrs and older and a Cochiti enrolled tribal member. The total count that met this criterion was 1,066 tribal members, so far, we are over 800 that made the effort to apply for the relief.


Pueblo de Cochiti (Farms) -Curtis Chavez, KCLC Development Director: The Keres Children’s Learning Center (KCLC) would first like to thank the Chamiza Foundation for providing funding to KCLC during this time of COVID-19. It has been a time to reflect on how important and resilient our Pueblo communities are. KCLC has had to adapt to various changes within our school and how we provide service to our children, parents and families. KCLC gratefully used the funds provided by the Chamiza Foundation on groceries for healthy and traditional meals that we are providing to our students daily.


Isleta Pueblo (Artists)-Ron Martinez Looking Elk, Isleta Pueblo Tribal Member: The Isleta Pueblo Arts Program set up a process where each artist was able to apply for the grant. The Treasurer’s office was able to support help manage the funds. The artist invitation to apply was sent out September 1st with a deadline of September 30th. Only a handful of people applied so the deadline was extended for another month ending October 31st, 2020.


Jemez Pueblo (Artists)- Jemez Community Development Corporation Board of Directors: Charlotte Garcia, Board President; Terry Sloan, Treasurer; and David Melton, Secretary: On behalf of the Jemez Pueblo Welcome Center and the Pueblo of Jemez artists we would like to thank you for your generous donation received in July. The funds have been equally distributed to each of the seventeen artists.


Jemez Pueblo (Farm)-Roger Fragua, Flower Hill Institute: With the resources and partnerships Flower Hill Institute was able to secure, through Green Cover Seed, thousands of “MILPA Garden Warm Season Seeds” to help distribute to the native community. With the thousands of seeds in hand Flower Hill Institute was able to distribute seeds through the Southwest and in some locations nationally. The lots of sees were distributed through a serious of batches sent out at 3 separate times over the course of depletion of the first lot order from Green Cover Seed. Over the course of the pandemic, recipients and individuals were posting plant grown and the progress of their gardens from all over United States. By providing materials, tools, and education, the Flower Hill Institute was able to grow an interest by native people to compel themselves in practicing agriculture. As harvesting season approaches, we look forward to the influx of updates that we are projected to receive from our new initiative. Those updates can be found on the website and social media sites around the month or Late August and September, they will also be quoted and referred to in the next report.


Laguna Pueblo (Artists)– Joannie Romero, Executive Director, Laguna Community Foundation: In April 2020, the Laguna Community Foundation (LCF) established the LCF COVID-19 Relief Fund in response to the coronavirus pandemic.  Over a period of three months, LCF raised close to $30,000 in donations through concerted outreach to individual donors and New Mexico foundations. Coast-to-coast contributions have made support possible to twenty-four artists and entrepreneurs to date. LCF continues to seek funding from contributors for a final round of support to the many talented artists that reside within the Pueblo of Laguna, which is estimated at more than 150 local artists and artisans. The Chamiza Foundation award helped to ensure a second round of awards to twelve of the twenty-four artists who have been provided relief to date. Artists are using the funding to pay for internet, electricity, and phone service essential to their livelihood, as well as to replenish art materials that would build their collections for when shows open again to the public.  Funding is also being used to purchase needed technology to connect to the internet and develop websites that market art collections. LCF is most grateful for the Chamiza Foundation’s recognition of the economic and cultural impact that CV-19 has had on our Laguna Pueblo artists and artisans, knowing keenly that their art serves as a reminder of generational resilience and cultural strength.


Picuris Pueblo (Farm)-Governor Craig Quanchello: On behalf of Picuris Pueblo, we would like to Thank you for your thoughtfulness during these trying times. We aregrateful for the funding we have received from the Chamiza Foundation. We were able to use the funds for our CommunityGarden. Items purchased were hand tools such as rakes, gardening shovels, gloves, knee pads, soil to assist with thetransplanting, and water spray nozzle. Funds were also used for the hoop houses, such as plastic coverings, boards to keepplastic in place and other items alike. Team effort was the key to planting this year. Program Director’s and StudentCouncil were part of the planting and up keeping of the Community Garden.


Pojoaque Pueblo (Artists)-Karl Duncan, Executive Director, Poeh Cultural Center, Pueblo of Pojoaque: On behalf of the Pueblo of Pojoaque I would like to Thank You for the support that you generously given during these most difficult times. The grant that you provided was given directly to 16 Pueblo of Pojoaque Tribal Members. The funds were distributed through an application process managed by Poeh Staff. Artists were notified of this opportunity via Pojoaque Tribal Member email blast and Pojoaque Tribal Council meeting announcement. Artists filled out an online form and were asked to respond on a question to describe their financial need. Applicants had to be an enrolled Pueblo of Pojoaque tribal member. We also asked applicants for their type of media, short bio or history of exhibitions and arts shows they participated in as well as photos of them with their artwork. The funds were much needed financially and lifted many spirits, participants spoke about how they would use the funds to pay bills, buy groceries, purchase school supplies and replenish art materials. We thank you for your support for Native Artists during this difficult time. We are grateful for your support to Native Artists and wish you and the people at Chamiza good health.


San Felipe Pueblo (Farm)Pinu’u Stout, San Felipe Pueblo Agriculture Program: With the generous funding the Chamiza Foundation supplied for the Pueblo’s farmers we offset the farmer’s bills for services for plowing, seeding, bailing, nearly 30%. We had 46 Farmers that had been provided Farm Services. We applied the donation across the board and each farmer received a 27% discount on their bill.  In this way we were able to be fair across the board and save money for each of the 46 farmers that had bills for services.  I’m working to find additional funds so that hopefully the farmers won’t have any bills for field services this year.


San Felipe Pueblo (Artists)-Elli Mishra, San Felipe Pueblo Accountant: Thirty-seven San Felipe Artists received support. Additional funding from another source was used to make sure that all applications were filled. We have more artists who need support.


Santa Clara Pueblo (Artists)-Roxanne Swentzell, Flowering Tree Permaculture Institute: Funds were distributed by Roxanne Swentzell to 14 Santa Clara Artists.


Santa Clara Pueblo (Farm): This year, since COVID happened, we still kept busy. Thanks to funding from organizations like you, we could continue to do research and educate. Because we could not have people coming over, we had to work within the quarantined group we established in early spring. We built three structures and created 3 short films. We leveled and added irrigation pipe to one field, planted 3 areas with crops and maintained them. We created several raised bed and growing boxes and are now busy harvesting and processing crops. We also started the foundations for the greenhouse we hope to build this fall. Thank you from all of us here at Flowering Tree!


Santo Domingo Pueblo (Artists)-Rex Coriz, Santo Domingo Pueblo Tribal Official: Thank you for your generous donation to our artists here in Santo Domingo Pueblo. It has been difficult for everyone during this tough time and the artists are very thankful for your donation. Beginning October 2020, Chamiza’s donations were distributed to 80 artists which consisted of 40 men and 40 women.


Taos Pueblo (Farm)-Tiana Suazo, Red Willow Center: I first want to thank you for the funds the Chamiza Foundation has given and the support you continue to give Pueblo communities during these challenging times. This funding had helped us tremendously, specifically with our Elder Food Program. The funding was used for supply costs such as paper bags, printing materials such as paper and ink for nutritional information and program updates to elders, delivery costs, and fruits and veggies from other local farms. The Elder Food Program began as an effort to help keep our elders healthy, as well as support some of our local farmers who were heavily impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic. The program created bags of seasonal RWC produce, with information about the food and simple cooking instructions. The bags were then delivered by a Taos Pueblo community member who delivered the bags at an affordable cost. As we enter into the harvest season, Red Willow Center has started to get back on its feet. We are growing into becoming a better serving community organization.


Taos Pueblo (Artists)-Joel Archuleta, Tribal Secretary, Taos Pueblo Governor’s Office: The Taos Pueblo Governor’s Office/Taos Pueblo Tourism Office gave 84 shop owner’s financial support along with smaller grants to 3 youths that had business licenses.


Tesuque Pueblo (Farm)- Governor Robert A. Mora, Sr., Pueblo of Tesuque: Thank you very much for your support of our farm. We have been using the funding to buy seeds for winter and spring crops. We have also been using some of the funding to purchase irrigation supplies, organic fertilizer, and cover sheets for winter crops. We are very thankful for the support your organization has provided and I’m hoping we can continue receiving the support of your organization in the future.


Ysleta del Sur Pueblo (Artists)-Richardo Quezada Jr., Director of Cultural Preservation: We are very grateful to the Chamiza Foundation for supporting our artists here at Ysleta del Sur Pueblo. The artists each received financial assistance to assist them through this difficult time.


Zia Pueblo (Farm)-Yvonne Benton, Agriculture Manager: Our program offers help to the farmers that need their field prepared for planting season.  Services we offer are “Tractor Services” which includes ripping, plowing, disking, tilling, line maker, borders, some cultivating during the planting season and field winterization for those who requested tractor services.  We planted corn, chile, squash, melons, watermelons, cucumbers and cotton.  We also planted some chile in the hoop house.  Tomatoes and herbs in the greenhouse.  In the second field, we planted a cover crop for soil health purposes.  Because we do not grow an overabundance of vegetables, we decided to share all produce with the community at no charge.  Two weeks ago, we roasted a truck load of corn in our corn pit and shared it with the community.

We also have the Pueblo of Zia Orchard and Honey Farm. The original orchard is approximately 10 acres with approximately 80-year-old apple trees.  This section is in dire need of revitalization.  The plan for this section is to propagate old trees and replant. We installed new turnouts on ditch line for irrigation in early spring before Covid-19.  Last week they planted trees that will be used as wind barriers for future fruit trees. The funding we received from the Chamiza Foundation was used to purchase supplies for the orchard, replacement parts for our chainsaws, (chains, files, bars, fuel and oil mixes), additional PPE, soil for trees and a 3-pt PTO post hole digger. On behalf of myself and my team, Thank-you Chamiza Foundation for your support and funding.


Zuni Pueblo (Farm)-Elahkwa- Curtis Quam, Museum Technician / Cultural Educator, A:shiwi A:wan Museum & Heritage Center: We are very grateful to Chamiza for the generous donation to help support agriculture in Zuni. I had envisioned a few things but with COVID it has made a few ideas more challenging and turn around for a few things have taken time. This Ag group has a few things in the works, some things we have planned. We would love to interview elders, gardeners and community people on the importance of growing your own food.  This of course, is very difficult since we are keeping up with all safety precautions.  I think we are figuring out some ways to make interviews happen. I am also in communication with Native Seed Search and would like to prepare for the upcoming season by purchasing a bulk order of seeds, we are also open to other tribal communities that could sell or trade seed.  I would envision a “Pick-up” style to get seeds for the community and give out information on videos would be a series of educational clips and cover different subject on traditional gardening in today’s world.


Zuni Pueblo (Artists)-Elroy Natachu Jr., ARTZ Cooperative Site Coordinator: The primary focus is to assist Ancestral Rich Treasures of Zuni (ARTZ) Cooperative Members and Enrolled Pueblo of Zuni Community Members with financial assistance and ARTZ Co-op Membership Retention/Recruitment. ARTZ Co-op will disburse an initial amount to active ARTZ Co-op Members in good standing. Each ARTZ Co-op Member will receive support.The second phase of fund disbursement will be micro-grants to Pueblo of Zuni Community Members (artisans). The projected timeline is from July 2020 to December 2020.The project has served: 130 Individuals.



May the New Year bring you

good health, happiness and success!!

From all of us here at the Chamiza Foundation