LAKE TAHOE, Calif., (June 30, 2020) – NBC Sports and American Century Investments announced today all prize money for the upcoming American Century Championship golf tournament will be donated to the Equal Justice Initiative, COVID-19 relief, including the Notah Begay III (NB3) Foundation COVID-19 Response Fund and the Center for Disaster Philanthropy (CDP) COVID-19 Response Fund, as well as regional Lake Tahoe non-profits. Combined with additional donations, event organizers anticipate fundraising to exceed $600,000. The American Century Championship has donated over $5 million to various charitable organizations over the years.


Stephen Curry, Aaron Rodgers, Charles Barkley and two-time defending champion Tony Romo are among more than 70 sports and entertainment stars competing in the 31st annual event at Edgewood Tahoe Golf Course, July 10-12. NBC Sports, owner and operator of the championship, will televise more than 18 hours of tournament coverage across NBC, NBCSN and GOLF Channel.


The Equal Justice Initiative (EJI) is an organization committed to ending mass incarceration and excessive punishment in the United States, challenging racial and economic injustice, and protecting basic human rights for the most vulnerable people in American society. The EJI is one of the many organizations Comcast (parent company for NBC Sports) and NBCUniversal are supporting as part of a multiyear plan to fight injustice and inequality against any race, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation or ability.


The NB3 Foundation COVID-19 Response Fund launched in April with the goal of providing food, water and educational resources to Native American families and communities facing unprecedented challenges during the global pandemic. Founded by former PGA TOUR professional and current NBC Sports golf analyst Notah Begay III, the fund provides financial support to Native-led organizations who are working on the ground in their communities to provide for those in need.


The CDP COVID-19 Response Fund was launched in March to support nonprofit organizations working directly to respond to the pandemic among vulnerable populations. These include social service organizations focused on supporting low-income households, small businesses, immigrants, refugees, Native Americans and Alaska Natives, older adults, people with disabilities, and other communities vulnerable to the physical health, mental health and economic impacts of the pandemic.


“In this time, when so many people in this country are hurting over racial division, the Equal Justice Initiative is a force for good focused on rectifying past wrongs,” said Jonathan Thomas, American Century president and CEO. “Also, we’re pleased to be committing tournament dollars to COVID relief and helping out our friends in Lake Tahoe, who have supported our tournament the past 31 years.”


“In celebrating the American Century Championship’s 31st year, we look forward to televising the event in a meaningful way that will help continue the nationwide dialogue on social justice, as well as supporting organizations and relief efforts that have been affected by the global pandemic,” said Jon Miller, President, Programming, NBC Sports.


“I’m honored and humbled by the American Century Championship making the NB3 Foundation one of the charitable partners,” said Begay. “It has been a tough road in a lot of communities on a variety of fronts, and I’m looking forward to doing more work on behalf of my Native American community, which has been devastated by COVID-19.”


In accordance with governmental and health guidelines, the American Century Championship will return as a live television event but without spectators. NBC and tournament partners at Edgewood Tahoe and host hotels Harrah’s Tahoe and Harveys developed a comprehensive safety plan that includes enhanced cleaning protocols at both the course and resorts, on-course sanitation stations and restrictions on large organized dinners and evening events.


Friday’s round will air live on NBCSN with Saturday and Sunday televised live on NBC.

All three rounds will also air on Golf Channel as encore presentations, providing a total of 18 hours of coverage.




The “Helping Our Relatives” Project is a unique internal organization effort to engage all staff in direct giving and supporting those in need. A modest amount was given to each staff member to use as they see fit to support youth, elders and families. The manner and method staff choose, the people they choose and what they choose to purchase or support is completely up to them.


Here is one story from staff member Renee Goldtooth-Halwood and her use of funds:

“Helping Our Relatives” funding was shared via groceries to Whippoorwill community elders on Navajo Nation. The area is in a rural part of the Nation and homesteads are quite distant from paved road. Some families may have vehicles but are not reliable and other community members are fiercely protecting their families. The process to strategically plan how to share essentials was quite involved: standing in line at Bashas (local grocery store), getting my temperature checked by security, having to stand to the side until my temperature cooled, filling my cart, purchasing, loading, unloading, disinfecting each item, washing produce, repacking in clean sanitized bags, then driving rough roads to deliver.

Renee Goldtooth-Halwood delivers groceries and supplies to elders in the Whippoorwill, Ariz.

I traveled with my mother who was adamant to join me and said, “I’ll stay in the car.” She was a wonderful companion, sitting in the front seat, with her mask and gloves on. Between the car where she sat, me standing to the side and relative’s eastern facing doorways, we shared tears full of love for each other and also for the unknown future. We wanted to communicate with action that we are thinking of them through prayer, through song that takes us from sunrise, sunset, twilight, darkness then back again. Taking the pandemic one day at a time.

In addition to the groceries, the Helping Our Relatives funding fed the people by contributing to a lunch for the team’s at the Apache County and Navajo Community Health Representative (CHR) for assisting NB3 Foundation with unloading and storing 300 boxes of food, thousands of gallons of water, and then keeping them safe until the CHR’s can deliver. In addition to all these wonderful points of light, I was quite impressed with the collaborative efforts of the Navajo Area Indian Health Service Chinle Service Unit, NAIHS CSU (federal), Navajo CHR Program (tribal), Apache County (county) and Notah Begay III Foundation (native-led non-profit). This NAIHS CSU Division of Public Health team was so organized they created and printed recipes using ingredients in the NB3 Foundation boxes. In unloading boxes at Apache County, I learned more about how the CHR’s are delivering firewood and coal to community and how local young people making care packages for community. Many stories to tell but I’ll end with saying that we were honored to hear the Navajo sun song after unloading boxes, a reminder about the reciprocity that reverberates through all of our collective work whether it’s funding, food, water, masks, and time.

The generosity of donors helped us move with urgency to protect our people, thank you for that.



Gratitude prevails. The generosity of nearly 400 individual donors, foundations, businesses and volunteers has resulted in $300,000 raised for the NB3 Foundation COVID-19 Response Fund. With these resources, we are committed to providing needed food, water and supplies directly to Native American communities impacted by COVID-19.  To date we have provided food, water and financial support to the following tribes and Native-led organizations:

  • Navajo Nation (Chinle, Az and surrounding communities)
  • Pueblos of San Felipe
  • Pueblo of ZIA
  • Pueblo of Santa Ana
  • Native American Community Academy
  • STAR School
  • Cheyenne River Youth Project
  • Thunder Valley CDC
  • Zuni Youth Enrichment Program, Zuni Pueblo
  • Mesa Elementary in Shiprock, N.M (25 laptops)

Meanwhile, we are continuing to identify and work with tribes, pueblos and Native-led organizations to help support youth, elders and families in need.

Please consider a donation today and help us help others.!/donation/checkout

Santa Ana Pueblo Governor Lawrence Montoya and Lt Governor Joey Sanchez receive $2,500 from NB3 Foundation to provide resources to their members amid COVID-19 stay-at-home orders.

Governor Fredrick Medina and Zia Pueblo council members receive $5,000 to help provide resources to their community.

Founder and principal of Explore! Community School brings experience and passion for youth development

The Notah Begay III (NB3) Foundation is excited to announce and welcome Jon Driskell as its new chief operating officer (COO). Driskell is an innovative leader, teacher, and coach with proven results in education, youth development and program management. He began his career in education as a special education teacher in Cubero, N.M. and is thrilled to return to the state and help advance the work of the NB3 Foundation.

Driskell has worked in youth education and development, trained and supported teachers for the national nonprofit TNTP, served as an educator in Cartagena, Colombia and is the founder and former principal of Explore! Community School in Nashville, Tenn.

As COO, he will oversee internal affairs, manage new and existing programs and initiatives and support fundraising for the organization.

“I am thrilled to bring an experienced leader and educator onto the team. Jon brings depth of knowledge, passion and youth experience to our work, strengthening our ability to advance our mission and champion children’s health,” said Justin Huenemann, president and CEO.

“I am excited to join the dynamic, joyful, committed team that is doing such important work. I am particularly looking forward to supporting opportunities for Native American youth and communities,” said Driskell.

Driskell is committed to social justice, community-informed programming, and opportunities for youth to lead healthy, fulfilling lives. When not at work, Driskell enjoys exploring nature, riding his bicycle, trail running, hiking, camping and reading.

Media Contact
Sacha Smith
(505) 867-0775

SANTA ANA PUEBLO, N.M. (May 7, 2020) – Today, the Notah Begay III (NB3) Foundation announced a generous donation of $50,000 from Delta Dental of New Mexico to support the NB3 Foundation COVID-19 Response Fund: a direct action fund providing food, water and educational resources to tribes, pueblos and Native American communities of New Mexico and the Navajo Nation.

“We are grateful for the financial support from Delta Dental and for stepping up and helping Native American families and communities during this uncertain time,” said Justin Kii Huenemann, president and CEO of the NB3 Foundation. “We remain committed to our direct-action approach, including purchasing, boxing and distributing food, water and supplies directly to households living in hard-hit areas. These funds will directly support people in need.”

This contribution comes in response to the tremendous need that has been identified for Native populations in dealing with the coronavirus pandemic.

“The President of the Navajo Nation issued the first press release on January 26, 2020 to make his tribal members aware of the Corona-19 virus and shared information about the public health risk that was associated. The immediate and proactive leadership and communication acknowledged genuine concern and offered early guidance. Preparation and caution were exercised, shortly after followed by a declaration of a state of emergency, but the virus as we have all seen, has had a disproportionately high rate of infection throughout the Nation. The frontline direct outreach and utilization of the CHR teams in the NB3 Foundation COVID-19 Response initiative has effectively been able to reach many tribal members to provide greatly needed supplies and services. Delta Dental of New Mexico is grateful for the many selfless acts of compassion and community that this Response Fund has provided,” said Lou Volk III, president and CEO of Delta Dental of New Mexico.

To date, the NB3 Foundation Fund has raised over $300,000, distributed food and water to the Navajo Nation, provided financial support to Native-led organizations working directly in their communities and provided educational technology supplies to Native students. The NB3 Foundation looks forward to continuing to be on the front lines of support and action over the coming months.



About Notah Begay III Foundation

The Notah Begay III (NB3) Foundation is a national, award-winning Native-led nonprofit dedicated to improving Native American children’s health. Each day, thousands of Native youth wake up facing significant health challenges and barriers to living full lives. The good news is that most are preventable and together we are changing this reality.

NB3 Foundation is changing the lives of Native American children by supporting and funding Native-driven, culturally centered programs and by providing direct opportunities for Native youth to live healthy, active lives. We believe that success must be driven at the local level and focus on holistic prevention, including child, family and community. To learn more about the NB3 Foundation, please visit at:

About Delta Dental of New Mexico

Delta Dental of New Mexico is a not-for-profit corporation that has been providing dental benefit plans for New Mexico residents since 1971. Our core values include responsibility in utilizing our success to create healthy, smart and vibrant communities.

Delta Dental of New Mexico and its affiliates in Arkansas, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, North Carolina, Ohio and Tennessee make up one of the largest dental plan administrators in the nation.

The Delta Dental plans are members of the Delta Dental Plans Association, a nationwide system of independently operated dental health service plans. Together, the plans provide coverage to more than 78 million Americans and operate two of the nation’s largest networks of participating dentists.






Andrea Thomas, Diné educator and Navajo Nation Board of Education member, and her 3rd-5th grade students at Mesa Elementary in Shiprock, N.M. have been struggling to continue their lessons remotely amid the closure of schools on the Navajo Nation, due to the coronavirus pandemic. Motivation has not been a barrier for her, her students and their families – all are committed to continuing education during these difficult times. Rather, the lack of technology has been the biggest hurdle facing her students and many more on the Navajo Nation hoping to continue school from home. 

Andrea Thomas delivers a laptop to a student’s home last week.

A majority of Mesa Elementary students come from low income households and do not have access to a computer at home.

Thomas’ students have been completing
their lessons on family member cell phones, or taking screenshots of homework to finish later on paper. Thomas knew that doing full lessons on a cellphone wasn’t an ideal form of learning and would likely overwhelm her students and families quickly. For her students to effectively learn remotely she knew they would need laptops.

Thomas stepped into action and started a fundraiser to purchase 26 laptops for her students.

“There’s something really unique about my group of students,” Thomas said. “I knew that I had to do the best I could to support them.”

Her fundraiser received donations from community members, parents and families but was still a ways from reaching her fundraising goal.

In April, NB3 Foundation President and CEO, Justin Kii Huenemann came across her fundraiser which directly aligns with one of the goals of the NB3 Foundation COVID-19 Response Fund: to provide access to education opportunities and youth development.

The connection was made and through the generosity of the donors to the NB3 Foundation COVID-19 Response Fund, laptops were purchased for all the students in Thomas’ classroom.

When it comes to her students and their futures, Thomas said that when her students reflect on these times she hopes it’s a positive memory of their resilience and perseverance, like their Diné culture.

“On behalf of myself and my students I would like to express our sincere and immense gratitude to the NB3 Foundation for their inspiring generosity. As so many doors seem to be closing, this donation has kept open an invaluable access to continued learning and growth and, just as importantly to one another, to community, and to continuity that will keep our spirits strong, our minds engaged, and our sense of determination unswayed in this time of great challenge. Ahéhee”- Andrea Thomas


The Notah Begay III (NB3) Foundation is pleased to announce that it’s COVID-19 Response Fund to support Native American children, elders and families has reached over $210,000 in donations to date.


“We are overwhelmed by the outpouring of support, particularly from our individual donors. Nearly 250 individuals have contributed over $150,000 to the fund,” said Justin Kii Huenemann, President and CEO. “Through this outpouring of generosity, we have been providing critical support to Native families in need and will continue as donations continue.”


The NB3 Foundation would also like to thank the following foundations and businesses for their important contributions to the fund:

  • PNM Resources Foundation
  • Albuquerque Community Foundation
  • The Denver Foundation
  • McCune Charitable Foundation
  • The Winky Foundation
  • Hormel Foods
  • Seventh Generation


The response fund was launched on April 6, 2020, with the goal of providing food, water and educational resources to Native families and communities facing unprecedented challenges during this time. The fund also provides financial support to Native-led organizations who are working on-the-ground in their communities to provide for those in need.


For information on our efforts and to follow our progress, follow @nb3foundation on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter or sign-up for updates on our website at

The Notah Begay III (NB3) Foundation is excited to announce the release of its new report, “Indigenous Voices and Practices: Recommendations for Grantmaking to Native-led Organizations.” This first-of-its kind report provides collective recommendations from established Native-led nonprofits of how grantmaking could be implemented to ensure success as defined by Indigenous communities.
This report is a result of dedicated Indigenous leaders and practitioners from across the country who share their knowledge and expertise with funders, foundations and grantmaking organizations. Over the course of two days, Native leaders developed guiding recommendations and shared important insights to assist funders in their efforts to create meaningful, long-lasting relationships with Native-led organizations and the communities they serve. The intent is to inspire deeper relationships and to improve results as determined by Native and Indigenous communities themselves.
“A primary goal of this report was to help identify and strengthen relationships between Native-led and Native youth serving organizations and funders,” says Justin Kii Huenemann, president and CEO, NB3 Foundation. “At its heart, this report is about trusting and respecting Indigenous knowledge and practices and investing in Indigenous communities with the full confidence that solutions rest in those communities.”
Tatewin Means, executive director, Thunder Valley Community Development Corporation shared, “The convening, and report, are powerful examples of the strength of Indigenous people when called upon to share collective insight and wisdom. No matter how difficult the conversation may be, we are always willing to share the truth, our truths, because it means our Indigenous nations will benefit.”
This report shares with funders a means to better align their funding models with Native-led organizational values and approaches. It also highlights the importance of respecting and valuing Indigenous evaluation methodologies and outcomes.
“We are grateful to the NB3 Foundation and the Indigenous leaders they assembled for showing all of us, especially funders trying to assist Indigenous people, how to be better, more humble agents of healing and wellbeing,” said Dr. Michael Painter, MD, Senior Program Officer, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
It is critical that the quality of life for Native and Indigenous youth and families is improved, that there is respect for tribal and community values, and an assurance that Native-led organizations receive the necessary financial support to sustainably operate.
Available for download HERE.

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