In Episode 82 of the Charity Charge Show, Stephen talks to Kim Langbecker, Executive Director of the Sacred Fire Foundation, with the mission to ensure the continuance of Indigenous wisdom traditions and to expand awareness of how and why these worldviews and their embodied values are crucial to modern society. Stephen and Kim discuss her unique background, working with indigenous communities, and her hopes for a post-pandemic world.
Kim Langbecker has more than twenty years of experience working in the social sector as an Executive Director, Event Producer and Strategic Development Consultant. Her ED experience includes Terra Conservation Initiative, and two non-profits which she founded: Indigenous Land Rights Fund and Journey to the Heart. Prior to her work in the world of social change, Kim enjoyed nearly 20 years in the music business as a promotion executive, working with five major labels. No matter where her journey has taken her and for as long as she can remember, she has been drawn to Indigenous cultures. Kim believes very strongly that now more than ever we have much to learn from our Indigenous brothers and sisters. Kim lives with her partner and a variety of wild creatures who frequent their home in the hills above Santa Fe, NM.
On what Kim learned in the music industry that she brought to the social sector:
I find the probably the biggest piece of carryover, and I think it’s true for every industry, is it’s about relationships and trust in the music industry. I learned very early on that was the best way for me to get my record on the radio. My job was to develop really strong trust-based relationships with music program directors, and even if they didn’t like the record or they didn’t think it was a hit, if you had that kind of relationship where they trusted you, you could sometimes get them to do something they didn’t want to do. If you were lucky, it turned out in your favor, meaning the song ended up being a hit. It was a benefit for everybody. In this world, particularly in the indigenous world, that is a core necessity. You have to work in a way that is trust-based, because of the historical challenges that indigenous people have faced. If I had one bit of advice to give to anyone in any industry, it’s really take the time to build relationships. And it’s not just to better your business relationships in your current situation. You don’t know where you’re going to be five years from now or 10 years from now. I’ve gone back and reconnected with people that I didn’t know I was going to reconnect with and I’ve had these amazing opportunities to say, “I’m doing this. You should get involved. You could support this.” You just never know where you’re going to be. I think that’s kind of a lost art that I wish people would put more time and effort into.
Interested in listening to the full episode and hearing more from other nonprofits? Check out more episodes here Charity Charge Show