Phil Lane Jr. is a member of the Yankton Sioux and Chickasaw First Nations and is an internationally recognized leader in human and community development.  He was born at the Haskell Indian Residential School where his mother and father met and attended school. 

During the past 40 years, he has worked with Indigenous Peoples in North, Central and South America, Micronesia, Thailand, India, Hawaii and Africa.  He served 16 years as Associate Professor, and Founder and International Coordinator of the Four Worlds International Institute (FWII) at the University of Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada.  FWII became an independent Institute in 1995.  With Phil’s guidance and applied experience, FWII has become an internationally recognized leader in human and community development because of the Institute’s unique focus on the importance of culture and spirituality in all elements of development.

Phil is Chairman of Four Directions International, an Aboriginal company incorporated in 1996 as FWII’s Economic Development Arm.  Four Directions International is dedicated to the development of sustainable economic enterprises that support holistic, political, social, cultural, environmental, spiritual and educational development. 

In 1977, Phil was named a Modern Indian Sports Great by the National Indian Magazine, Wassaja, for his record-breaking accomplishments in Track and Wrestling.  He has extensive experience in his own cultural traditions, is an award winning author and film producer, and holds Master’s Degrees in Education and Public Administration. His film credits include the National Public Television series “Images of Indians” with the late Will Sampson, “Walking With Grandfather”, “The Honor of All: The Story of Alkali Lake” and “Healing the Hurts”. 

In August 1992, Phil was the first Indigenous person to win the prestigious Windstar Award, presented annually by the late John Denver and the Windstar Foundation to a global citizen whose personal and professional life exemplifies commitment to a global perspective, operates with awareness of the spiritual dimension of human existence, and demonstrates concrete actions of the benefit for humans and all living systems of the Earth.  At this International event, in recognition of his lineage and long time service to Indigenous Peoples and the human family, Indigenous Elders from across North America recognized Phil as a Hereditary Chief through a Sacred Headdress Ceremony.  Other Windstar winners include: Oceanographer Jacques-Yves Cousteau, David Brower, Founder of the Earth Island Institute, Yevgeni Velikhov, Vice President of the Soviet Academy of Sciences, Wangari Maathai, Nobel Peace Prize Winner and founder of Kenya’s Greenbelt Movement; Akio Matsumura, Executive Director of The Global Forum, and Lester Brown, President of the World Watch Institute.

In November 2000, Phil received the International Award for Freedom and Human Rights from the Foundation for Freedom and Human Rights in Bern, Switzerland. Phil is the first person from the Americas to receive the award, and he joins a select international group who have also received the award:  the Dalai Lama of Tibet, Dr. Boutro Boutros Ghali, former Secretary General of the United Nations, and British Lord Yehudi Menuhin, musician and philosopher. The Foundation says the award is in recognition of Phil's "unique contributions to improve the lives and future hopes of Native populations. It is primarily based on his most special merits of promoting freedom and justice for Indigenous Peoples by building human and spiritual capacity rather than opposing oppression directly and also on his international visionary initiatives for Indigenous populations by healing the root causes of hopelessness and despair."

In June 2008, Phil was awarded the 14th Annual Ally Award by the Center for Healing Racism in Houston, Texas.  Phil received the Ally Award for his national and international work in promoting freedom and justice for Indigenous Peoples by building human and spiritual capacity that focuses on healing the root causes of racism and oppression rather than focusing on conflict.  The Ally Award is an annual award presented by the Houston-based Center for the Healing of Racism to honor the achievements of those who have worked hard to achieve harmony of all ethnic and cultural groups.  This award particularly recognized Phil’s dedicated work as one of the primary leaders in addressing the intergenerational trauma experienced by more than 150,000 Indigenous children who attended Canada’s residential schools. This effort resulted in a $3 billion dollar settlement, a full apology by Canada’s Prime Minister, the establishment of a five-year nationwide Truth and Reconciliation Commission, and a $500 million National Aboriginal Healing Foundation, governed and guided directly by Aboriginal Peoples, to address the intergenerational trauma.

In 2008 Phil stepped into global leadership as Chairman of the Four Worlds International Institute (FWII), after having completed a three-year tenure as CEO of the United Indians of All Tribes Foundation (UIATF) in Seattle, Washington. FWII’s central program initiative is The Fourth Way that is dedicated to unifying the human family by taking a culturally based, principal-centered path that transcends assimilation, resignation, and conflict. FWII has been working with multi-stakeholder partners in the implementation of a comprehensive community-based strategy.  This hemispheric initiative, The Reunion of the Condor and Eagle, utilizes digital literacy, social networking, and participatory media, and FWII’s culturally based, principle-centered curriculum and training programs, in a global networking strategy called “Indig.e.Net.” This digitally-based, Indigenous communications and educational initiative, to be established at the Ciudad del Saber in Panama City, Panama in 2009, will serve as one of the key components for implementing The Fourth

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You Were Born For Such a Time as This!
Collective Wisdom of Transformation
Introductory Presentation
April 3, 7-10 PM