Speaker Biographies

Rebecca Nagle

Rebecca Nagle is an award-winning advocate and writer focused on advancing Native rights and ending violence against Native women. Nagle is a citizen of Cherokee Nation and a two spirit/queer woman. Nagle is the host of the podcast This Land focused on treaty rights and tribal sovereignty in Oklahoma. Her writing about Native representation and tribal sovereignty has been featured in the Washington Post, USA Today, Teen Vogue, the Huffington Post, and more. In 2016, Nagle was named one of the National Center American Indian Enterprise Development’s Native American 40 Under 40 for her work to support survivors and advocate for policy change to address the crisis of violence against Native women. Nagle lives in Tahlequah, Oklahoma, where she works for her tribe on language revitalization.

Bayley J. Marquez, PhD

Dr. Bayley J. Marquez is an indigenous scholar from the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians. In 2019, she earned her doctorate from the social and cultural studies program at the University of California, Berkeley's Graduate School of Education. Marquez's research examines racial narratives and forms of colonial pedagogy propagated by white educational reformers in the late 19th and 20th centuries in schools created for black and indigenous students. Her archival research on black and indigenous industrial schools has been supported by the Ford Foundation and the Joseph A. Myers Center for Research on Native American Issues. Her current book project, “Settler Pedagogy: Teaching Slavery and Settlement,” examines the role of education in the production of settler colonial space and structures of antiblackness. 

Nalini Negi, PhD

Nalini Negi is an associate professor at the School of Social Work (SSW) in the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB). Dr. Negi’s research has emphasized the social etiology and mechanisms that confer risk of psychological distress and substance abuse among migrant populations such as Latino transmigrants (migrants who move back and forth between borders) and day laborers. She has published extensively in scientific journals as well as edited two books, one on social work practice with Latinos by Lyceum Press and one on social work practice with transnational migrants by Columbia University Press. Dr. Negi is currently principal investigator on a grant funded by the National Institute of Drug Abuse examining the drug use patterns of Latino migrant day laborers in Baltimore city. In 2012, she received the National Award for Excellence in Research by a New Investigator from the National Hispanic Science Network. She was also awarded the 2012-2013 Exemplary Faculty of the Year Award for her outstanding teaching by the Student Government Association of the SSW UMB. Dr. Negi received her doctoral degree in social work from the University of Texas at Austin in August 2008. Her dissertation work examined the risk and protective factors of psychological well-being and substance use among Latino day laborers. Dr. Negi’s dissertation received the top honor for a dissertation by the Society for Social Work and Research (SSWR), the largest scientific organization representing social work in the United States. Dr. Negi speaks five languages and has lived in seven countries in five continents.

Gabrielle Tayac, PhD

Dr. Gabrielle Tayac, a member of the Piscataway Indian Nation, is an activist scholar committed to empowering Indigenous perspectives. Most recently, she served to promote the elevation of Native women and girls as the Director of Legacy Collections at Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors. Gabi earned her Ph.D. and M.A. in Sociology from Harvard University, and her B.S. in Social Work and American Indian Studies from Cornell University. Her scholarly research focuses on hemispheric American Indian identity, multiracialism, indigenous religions, and social movements, maintaining a regional specialization in the Chesapeake Bay.


Gabi has served in staff and advisory capacities for numerous organizations including Amnesty International, Survival International, National Geographic, the Maryland Commission on Indian Affairs, the Historic St. Mary’s Commission, the Accokeek Foundation, the National Park Service, and the Mid-Atlantic Regional Center for the Humanities. In her passionate youth, she co-founded the League of Indigenous Sovereign Nations, a hemispheric alliance of Native peoples, which led the largest action north of Mexico to mark 500 years of American Indian survival in 1992.


Gabi is regularly featured in the media including National Public Radio, Tavis Smiley, the BBC, the Washington Post, and the Christian Science Monitor. She lectures widely to diverse audiences at venues ranging from the White House to kindergarten classrooms. Gabi dedicates time and energy to supporting the DC area local North American and diasporic Central and South American Indigenous communities through cultural and political efforts. As a member of Washington D.C.’s host nation, she helps to center connection to and ceremony for diverse global Indigenous representatives.


Gabi was a scholar at the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian from 1999-2017. At NMAI, she had also served as the Unit Head for Education and a Curator. She co-curated one of NMAI’s inaugural exhibitions with Jolene Rickard and Gerald McMaster, called Our Lives: Contemporary Life and Identity. She is also the curator of Return to a Native Place: Native Peoples of the Chesapeake Region which opened in 2007. Gabrielle co-curated the banner travelling exhibit, IndiVisible: African-Native American Lives in the Americas and served as General Editor for the book of the same name. Her most recent formative project is the upcoming exhibit Native New York: Where Nations Rise, opening in 2019.


She lives in Takoma Park, Maryland, with her children, Sebastian and Jansikwe.

Participant Biographies

Both Christine and Jennifer are leadership members of Indigenous Strong. 

The Mission of INDIGENOUS STRONG is to stand for our RIGHTS and RECOGNITION as Native and Indigenous People so that our history and modern day presence is NOT erased. Our first actions include organizing legislation to recognize Indigenous People's Day in Baltimore City and moreover in the State of Maryland.  

Christine Duckworth

Christine Duckworth is from the Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina. Born and raised in Baltimore Maryland she currently resides in West Virginia. She is a former board member of the Baltimore American Indian Center. Christine started dancing in the circle at the age of 6 and has traveled as a vendor creating her own unique Native Beadwork. Christine is also a proud member of the 2Spirit community. Christine is passionate about her Native Culture. Christine believes if we respect and teach our history and culture one day the colonized world will realize We Are Still Here!

Jennifer Folayan

Jennifer Folayan is a graphic designer, business owner, and local community organizer. She is of Pueblo, Cherokee, Aztec and Spanish descent and serves on the Board of Directors for the Baltimore American Indian Center and FORCE. She is passionate about Indigenous Peoples and healing through the Arts.