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    FLETC Native American Alaska Native Spotlight: Shawn Walker

    FLETC Native American Alaska Native Spotlight:  Shawn Walker

    Photo By Jennifer Scales | Kack-Te-Ah-Be, or better known by his English name Shawn Walker, is a member of the...... read more read more



    Story by Jennifer Scales 

    U.S. Department of Homeland Security

    FLETC employee asks, "How do you see yourself?"

    NOTE: The Federal Law Enforcement Training Centers (FLETC) is known for its training curriculum to some of the world's best law enforcement personnel. FLETC also has a culturally diverse staff who provide instruction and support to those seeking training. As we acknowledge Native American and Native Alaska Heritage Month around the nation, FLETC spotlights some of these individuals who support the law enforcement mission.

    Kack-Te-Ah-Be, or better known by his English name Shawn Walker, is a member of the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation (Shkotani Bodèwadmiakiwen) located around Mayetta, Kansas.

    For the past five years, Walker has been with FLETC as a Regional Coordinator/Instructor for the State, Local, & Tribal Division (SLTD). He covers Region 4 (Midwestern) that includes Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas, Wyoming, and Tribal Nations.

    The Potawatomi Nation was first located around Lake Michigan, covering Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, and Wisconsin. The Potawatomi Nation was one of the three Nations referred to as the "Keeper of Fire" or "Three Brothers." The other Nations that made up the fires were the Odawas and Ojibwas. In the 1800s, through the Indian Removal Acts, the Potawatomi Nation was split into seven different bands. During these times, the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation was forced to move multiple times. In 1838, the Nation faced the "Potawatomi Trail of Death," removing and forcing 859 members to travel by foot 660 miles over 61 days. It left more than 40 dead, most of them children. Today, over 80 place markers show the path and places where they camped along the way.

    Walker grew up off the reservation with his mother, who was not native. As a young adult, he became more active with his history through reconnections with his father and other relatives from his native side.

    In 1996, Walker finished his bachelor's degree and started working in the law enforcement profession with the Kickapoo Nation Tribal Police in Kansas. Over the next 19 years, Walker would also serve with the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation Tribal Police, City of Mission Police Department in Kansas, and City of Pleasanton Police Department in Kansas. He served in the ranks as patrol officer up to Chief of Police. He had also served as a police mentor for Afghanistan border police. Walker continued to serve as a part-time deputy for Jackson County Sheriff's Office back in Kansas.

    In 2012, Walker retired from the Kansas Army National Guard after 21 years of total service. While in the Guard, he worked on jet engines and performed other related roles. Walker had one deployment to Bosnia & Herzegovina as part of the Stabilization Force (SFOR) mission and two deployments to Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF).

    While Walker was a Chief of Police, he found himself wanting to teach. He credits Anthony Lara and Joe Gomez of FLETC Artesia for motivating him to make the leap to instructing.

    He also gave credit to a few other people. "Chuck Haggard was the reason I got into instructing," and "Mark Warren was the one that mentored me on how to teach and to understand whom I was teaching," Walker said. "Michael Nila was the reason I started working on my Educational Doctorate. Michael was able to reopen my closed mind to learning again."

    Walker said that his greatest motivation was his native grandmother Vestina.

    "She served on the Tribal Council and retired from the IHS (Indian Health Service)," Walker said. "She taught me to see a person as an individual and not by personal bias. I have used that quality throughout my life, which has helped me to understand situations."

    Walker is a graduate of Washburn University in Topeka with a Bachelor of Science major in law enforcement and minor in sociology and received his Master’s in Business Administration from Friends University in Wichita.

    He is currently attending Walden University of Minneapolis, Minn., for an Educational Doctorate.

    Walker and his wife, Kimberley, now reside in Jesup, Ga. They have one son, two daughters, and one granddaughter, all living in Kansas.

    In his spare time, Walker and Kimberley enjoy their three horses and two dogs.

    If anyone knows Walker, they know the name "Bob," which is their 25-year-old off-track thoroughbred. Walker said, "I have about 26 acres that still needs much work in order to give the horses some room to move. So that is where my free time goes when not doing schoolwork."

    Walker's reflections for this month of recognition, "We need to be true to ourselves and take ownership of the life we create for ourselves and those we affect. We have allowed others to make us feel less than human and give them control of our minds through bias and stereotypes. We are the only ones that can change that thinking. It starts by returning our thinking to the times of our youth before bias and stereotypes became a part of our lives. Allowing that growth mindset to take over which allowed us to explore the world around it, it was creative, and not much could have stopped us."

    Walker does look forward to the day to return to his Nation and the possibility of serving on the Tribal Council to honor his family.



    Date Taken: 11.23.2020
    Date Posted: 11.23.2020 21:07
    Story ID: 383626
    Location: GLYNCO, GA, US 

    Web Views: 96
    Downloads: 0