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Sarai Cook

Director of Native Children and Youth Funding

Sarai Cook, Juris Doctor, is director of native children and youth funding with Children’s Funding Project. In her capacity as senior fellow, she develops and implements strategic finance planning and revenue generation strategies in partnership with tribal, state, and local governments. Sarai tracks and documents the flow of public funds into tribal communities, as well as provides overall guidance on the implications of various tax laws and policies on the strategic financing work of states, and localities.

Since starting her career, Sarai has worked in community development, and public service with tribes locally, and nationally with the Muscogee Nation, and the United States Department of Energy. She is licensed to practice law with the Washington State Bar Association, Oklahoma Bar Association, and the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Oklahoma. Sarai is the recipient of the National Center for Native American Economic Development 40-under-40 award, the Muscogee Nation’s professional of the year award, and she has been recognized as a New Leadership Oregon outstanding alumna.

In addition to her work with Children’s Funding Project, Sarai speaks, writes, and advocates for the wide-spread use of trauma-informed practices within government and public facing entities. Most recently, she was invited by the White House Office of Public Engagement, the Department of Labor, and the Department of Justice to help federal decision makers increase their knowledge base around ways to serve some of America’s most vulnerable and marginalized communities. She is the author of several published articles and a large national tribal resource guide.