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Friends of the Plains Indians

About Us

The Friends of the Museum of the Plains Indian was first organized in 2004 as the Museum of the Plains Indian Artist Association. As the mission of the group widened to include a range activities supporting both the Museum and Native American artists and craftspeople, our corporate name was legally changed to Friends of the Museum of the Plains Indian.

The Friends of the Museum of the Plains Indian is a federally registered 501(c)(3) entity, registered with Dun & Bradstreet and the State of Montana as a non-profit group. We are a membership organization with an active Board of Directors and a wider list of electronic and regular mail Correspondents. We are headquartered in Browning, Montana, with an office in the Museum of the Plains Indian thanks to the Museum manager, the U. S. Department of the Interior Indian Arts and Crafts Board. Our Executive Director, Dr. Ruthann Knudson of Knudson Associates, has an office in Great Falls, Montana. Knudson Associates provides the Friends with a regularly monitored telephone, fax, and email service. As a non-profit organization the Friends is supported by donations and grants, which we greatly appreciate.

In the past five years the organization has been supported by the Humanities Montana, as a Cultural Trust of the Montana Arts Council (2010-2011, 2012-2013), and by foundations and individual donors—thanks, all! We have had grant support for a 2008 workshop on The Museum of the Plains Indian in 2025: A Vision of the Future and a Museum Game Collection Youth Day Camp in Browning. In 2009-2011 we supported the remastering of the now-classic Winds of Change visitor film at the Museum, as well as helping provide electronic equipment for showing the film as well as general Museum use. In 2012 we co-sponsored an American Indian Sign Language Conference in Browning at Blackfeet Community College and the Museum. In addition to these and other projects, the Friends host openings of special artist exhibits at the Museum and provide an honorarium for visiting artists. The Friends are busy throughout each year, and we ask you to support our efforts as you can.