New Look, New Energy

First Nations Launches Refreshed, Revitalized Logo and Colors

First Nations’ new logo, revised 2023

At First Nations, our commitment through the years has been unfaltering. We were formed 43 years ago during an era of cultural evolution and legal progress, when initiatives such as the 1975 Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act and the Indian Controlled School Movement brought shifts in justice movements.

Our founder, businesswoman and advocate Rebecca Adamson, was inspired by these changing times and knew they only underscored the gaps in resource development across Native communities.

Rebecca’s founding beliefs carry with First Nations today. Since launching as the First Nations Financial Project in 1980, First Nations has held true to this commitment.

We believe in the genius of Native communities, and we honor our role in helping Native communities thrive economically and culturally, based on the ways that they see best.

While holding fast to this core approach, First Nations has indeed evolved through the years. What started as a two-room office in Fredericksburg, Virginia, with two employees, has grown into a 42-staff member organization with headquarters in Longmont, Colorado, and field and remote offices across the country.

Building on the original $25,000 investment from organizations like the Ford Foundation, Siobhan Nicolau, and the Administration for Native Americans, First Nations has since successfully managed 3,052 grants totaling $64.7 million to Native American projects and organizations in 45 states, the District of Columbia, and U.S. Territory American Samoa.

New energy moving forward

We honor this history and build on our heritage with all that we do. And we work to ensure that while we continue to grow and evolve, we stay true to the reason First Nations was first formed: To give Native communities the training, support, and financial resources to implement the programs and solutions they need. Our approach is not prescriptive. It is not top-down. It is not ridden with policies and red tape. It is based on trust and confidence in Native communities.

This year, we’ve taken the opportunity to ensure that our evolution – and our core, unwavering approach – is showcased in our brand imagery. Our look and feel have been re-energized, with a bold sun in the hue of sunflower that reflects the vibrancy of the Native communities we serve. And our new colors of clay, ocean, sky, and mahogany are a nod to the Native resources, assets, and potential we have always invested in.

The eagle has been a consistent image since our founding.

At the same time, we honor our origins, holding true to why First Nations was formed and why we continue our work today: To serve Native communities in ways that matter to them. We show this with the continued use of our eagle, flying with the sun, uplifting these Native communities, and giving rise to voices, presence, and possibilities. We are rooted in Native communities, and we are strengthened and inspired by our Native cultures.

A lot at First Nations has stayed the same over the years. But there are many new happenings on the horizon. This summer, we continue to hone our strategic program areas, ensuring that we’re positioned to best provide training, technical assistance, and support in ways that are most effective and needed.

We are investing in internal capacity and structure to best implement that strategy.

First Nations’ original logo, 1980

We’re launching initiatives like the Tribal Lands Conservation Fund, bolstering our California Tribal Fund, and realigning our focuses on Native arts, youth, and financial empowerment. We are grounded by who we’ve always been, but energized with all that is possible.

We’re bringing the new logo and colors to life through our website, social media channels, publications, and reports to philanthropy. With it we convey a message to all our stakeholders – our friends, allies, community partners, supporters, and policymakers: We hold true to our origin story, but we are always here, always evolving, in ways that best advance Native-led organizations and Native-held solutions throughout Indian Country. We are grounded in community and always reaching higher.

Michael E. Roberts
President & CEO
First Nations Development Institute