Community organizer and head of the Thunder Valley Community Development Corporation Nick Tilsen believes that with the new funding of $1 million, his community may finally be able to turn over a new leaf. He believes the regional plan is different from previous attempts to rejuvenate the area because it is the "collective vision of the Oglala people," with grassroots and tribal support.
"Thunder Valley promotes synergy... between tradition and innovation... One traditional activity that's being revived is, simply, planning. 'Looking forward is not new for us,' Tilsen said. 'What's new is that nowadays we live day to day, crisis to crisis. Our people never have a moment to consider the future.'"