As a young adult, Shondiin Silversmith didn’t consider her Native American perspective valuable to the field of journalism. As she’s matured, however, she’s realized that although Native news is not always reported, these stories do matter. Her stories matter and that is what keeps her motivated to continue working in this field. Her goal as a journalist is to provide whatever newsroom in which she works a valuable perspective. She may not always get to report on Native American news in a modern newsroom, but she wants to have the confidence to approach her stories differently. What makes journalism so appealing to her is simple: the story. She loves the idea that a journalist can get a story out of a person or people who in any other light would seem unimportant. That’s what drew her into journalism. She wants to be that journalist telling those people’s stories, big or small.
Silversmith has a bachelor’s degree in communication from the University of New Mexico-
Gallup. While studying there, she served as editor of the student newspaper, an opportunity that prepared her for internships at newspapers and, ultimately, a full-time reporting position at the Navajo Times. The Navajo Times is the country’s largest Native American newspaper, and she has worked there since 2012. As a Native American reporter, she has had the unique opportunity to report on subjects that are close to home, including lighter topics like education, culture and entertainment, along with more difficult issues like tribal sovereignty, politics and discrimination.