Editorial: Carl Venne a leader in education
"Before Carl Venne was elected chairman of the Crow Tribe in 2002, he was a student retention counselor at Little Big Horn Community College.

As leader of the tribe, Chairman Venne was a strong proponent of education. He encouraged Crow children to complete high school and earn college degrees, including graduate degrees. He believed in the importance of knowing his people's history and culture as he sought to have tribal members help themselves and determine their own future.

As tribal members and governmental leaders from Montana and beyond pay respects to Chairman Venne at a funeral mass today in Crow Agency, many will recall his support for higher education.

The potentially largest project Chairman Venne worked on is the Many Stars development, a partnership between the tribe and Australian-American Energy Co. to develop Crow coal resources and produce liquid fuels from coal at a plant to be built on the reservation. Although the project won't come to fruition for years, part of the deal the chairman made required the energy company to fund college education for tribal members so they would be prepared to work for Many Stars. Ten Crow Tribal members, including two who are doing internships with Many Stars, already are studying at Little Big Horn Community College because of that agreement."

Get the Story:
Gazette Opinion: Crow leader saw tribe's future in educatio (The Billings Gazette 2/19)

Related Stories:
Jodi Rave: Carl Venne a man with 'great vision' (2/17)
Secretary Salazar statement on Carl Venne's passing (2/17)
Heart illness led to death of Crow chair Carl Venne (2/17)