Our mission

Our mission at the Native American Training Institute is to empower individuals, families, and the community to create a safe and healthy environment so children and families can achieve their highest potential.


In May 1994, four North Dakota tribes – the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, the Three Affiliated Tribes, the Spirit Lake Sioux Tribe, and the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa – began discussions of common child welfare issues with the North Dakota Department of Human Services Children and Family Services Division, Casey Family Programs, and the North Dakota Indian Affairs Commission.

Together, we identified a critical need for training and worked together to build the right tools. We envisioned trainings that anyone in the process, from foster and adoptive parents to tribal courts to law enforcement, would benefit from. The common needs of the Tribes resulted in the shared vision of the Native American Children and Family Services Training Institute, and we opened our doors in 1995. In 2001, we revised our name to the Native American Training Institute (NATI).

Purpose Banner


Here at NATI, we provide culturally-relevant training and curriculum packages for professionals working with Native American children and families. We offer training in a wide range of topics, including foster parenting, wraparound (community training, care coordinator training, and WRIT training), youth relationship building and HIV/AIDS awareness, Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA), cultural competency, and historical trauma.

We also conduct workshops and conferences throughout the year. The North Dakota Indian Child Welfare Act conference is held each February. In addition, we coordinate mini-conferences of state and tribal human services and other professionals throughout the year.

We are also available, by request, to do personalized or specialized training in areas such as strategic planning, tribal funding access for child welfare programs, parenting, and program planning.

Our Staff

Gillian Plenty Chief



Jessi Leneaugh

ICWA Partnership Trainer / Coordinator


Dereck Stonefish

Training Coordinator


Sloan Henry

ICWA Family Preservationist


Leah McCloud

ICWA Family Preservationist


Lonnie Wise Spirit

Tribal Liaison


Jill Wilkie

ICWA Family Preservationist


Bobbie Kastner

ICWA Family Preservationist


Our Board

Nathan Davis


ND Indian Affairs Commission

600 East Blvd. Ave.
1st Floor Judicial Wing
Bismarck, ND 58505
Phone: 701-328-2428
Fax: 701-328-3000

Daniell Breland


Turtle Mountain Child Welfare & Family Services

PO Box 900
Belcourt, ND 58316
Phone: 701-477-5688
Fax: 701-477-5797


Nicole Poitra


TAT Social Services

404 Frontage Road
New Town, ND 58763-9402
Phone: 701-627-8166
Fax: 701-627-4255

Donalda Charboneau

Acting Director

Spirit Lake Sioux Tribe Social Services

PO Box 39
Fort Totten, ND 58335
Phone: 701-766-4404 ext. 322
Fax: 701-766-4722

Raquel Thompson


Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Child Protection Services

PO Box 640
Fort Yates, ND 58538
Phone: 701-854-3431
Fax: 701-854-2119