From Standing Rock To Colorado, American Indians Fight To Control Their Resources

The Standing Rock Sioux’s protest of the Dakota Access Pipeline recently grabbed the nation’s attention. But American Indian tribes have a long history of fighting for sovereignty and control of their resources. The new documentary “Beyond Standing Rock” starts with the struggle in North Dakota and then turns to other stories of tribes trying to harness their destiny, including the Southern Ute of Colorado.

“A lot of it is control your destiny. Make sure you have the right people, good people, experienced people, knowledgeable people working for you,” former Southern Ute tribal council member Mike Olguin says in the film. His tribe of some 1,500 has taken charge of its assets and now manages billions of dollars in energy resources and investments.

Inside Energy correspondent Leigh Paterson is one of the film’s producers. She spoke with Colorado Matters host Ryan Warner. The documentary airs on Rocky Mountain PBS at 7 p.m. March 2.

See the film trailer and listen to the Colorado Matters conversation at


Southern Ute Pumpjack – Courtesy photo by Leigh Paterson

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