American Indian Resource Center At BSU Names New Executive Director
Bemidji State University and Northwest Technical College has named BSU alumna Chrissy Koch as the new executive director of the American Indian Resource Center.
Koch has been the American Indian Resource Center’s outreach specialist since July 2019. During that time, Koch worked to bring American Indian student groups to campus and guide them through the application process. She also spent time building relationships with BSU’s tribal college partners at Red Lake Nation College, White Earth Tribal and Community College, Leech Lake Tribal College and Fond Du Lac Tribal and Community College.
According to the release from the BSU, Koch will begin her duties as executive director on January 8, 2020.
Koch has a bachelor’s degree in Indian studies from BSU, a masters’ degree in educational leadership from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota, and is currently enrolled in a doctoral program in education with an emphasis in leadership and management at Capella University.
Before joining the staff at the American Indian Resource Center, Koch spent 10 years working in a variety of American Indian student-support roles in northern Minnesota K-12 schools. She served as the secretary-treasurer, helped plan the annual powwow, and held fundraisers during her time as an active member of BSU’S Council for Indian Students.
“It is surreal that I am now here as the director of this center and I am excited to bring new ideas. There’s been a lot of really great things that have happened with the AIRC since it’s opened at Bemidji State and a lot of amazing things have been implemented, but there is still a lot of room for growth,” Koch said. “That is something that we will be able to bring forth as a team.”
Koch, who identifies as Ojibwe and Lakota, replaces Bill Blackwell Jr., who resigned from the position in August after serving in the role for almost five years.