Francis Vigil



Mr. Francis Vigil is from the Pueblo of Zia in New Mexico. He is also Pueblo of Jemez and Jicarilla Apache, which are all Native American tribes in New Mexico. Currently, Mr. Vigil serves as the Tribal Education Specialist for the National Indian Education Association. Mr. Vigil’s areas of concentration are in Culturally and Linguistically Responsive Education, Community-based Education, and Indigenous Methods, Methodology, and Pedagogy. He utilizes those areas to intersect with his social justice work, which includes diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility. Previously, Mr. Vigil served as the Educational Specialist for Culture, History, and Language for the Bureau of Indian Education under the U.S. Department of Interior. In addition, Mr. Vigil has served as a high school science teacher and as an educational administrator at the school, school district, state, and federal levels. In addition to serving on the Parents as Teachers Board of Directors, Mr. Vigil also serves as a Commissioner for the State of New Mexico’s Deaf and Hard of Hearing Commission, and he currently serves on Google’s Equity Board. He recently served as the President of the New Mexico Tribal Language Consortium. Mr. Vigil continues to provide educational consultation services to various educational entities at the local, state, and national levels. Most importantly, he is honored to continue to serve and work with numerous tribes and tribal communities across the United States.

Mr. Vigil holds a B.S. in Microbiology from New Mexico State University, a M.A. in Secondary Education from University of New Mexico, and is continuing his work on a PhD in Social Justice with a focus on educator identity and social emotional learning in Native American education systems.

Mr. Vigil is a husband, and he is a proud “girl dad’ to four beautiful daughters, Aliyah, Maya, Bria, and Soniya. He is also a grandpa to three awesome grandchildren, Layla, Logan, and Evelyn.


Title: Intentional Conversations as Intentional Practice

Consider this scenario: You are being introduced to a group of new people. You are asked to introduce yourself. Take a second and ask yourself, "what would I say?" Many times, we default to a canned response, and we provide our name, title, degree, and maybe pronouns. This is all pertinent information, and it is a peek into our lives.

In our fast-paced world, we don't make time, or take time, to provide the opportunity for people to take a deeper dive to open doors for people to share "who they are". In this day and age where professional entities are engaging in diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility, we don't intentionally open the door for that to happen.

In this session, we will explore the simple act of "opening the door" for intentional conversation to occur. Through intentional conversations, we move beyond "institutionalized introductory statements, and we begin intentional conversations that build relationships and understandings of others, their experiences, their stories, and their understandings.

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