spirit-logo“The American Indian / Alaska Native Initiative on Cancer” (“Spirit of EAGLES”) [U54-CA153605-01] was initiated in 2000 as one of eighteen NCI-funded Special Populations Networks. Through the initial project, efforts were implemented and evaluated to increase cancer awareness among tribal Nations and organizations throughout the U.S.

The focus of this next phase for the SoE Community Networks Program (hereafter referred to as “SoE-CNP”) [U54-CA153605-01] is to increase community-based participatory research opportunities addressing culturally relevant education, training, and research. The long-term goal is to reduce cancer health disparities by maintaining and expanding tribal community networks and coalitions established by the SoE.

This includes (a) enhancing collaborations with NCI’s CIS; (b) recruiting Natives for education, training, and research opportunities; and, (c) expanding SoE in the southeast, northeast, the Northern Plains, and multi-tribal urban areas.




The specific aims for this community network multidisciplinary project are:

Specific Aim 1:

Develop, implement and evaluate an administrative core that effectively integrates and coordinates a comprehensive national AIAN research program (Administrative Core).

Specific Aim 2:

Refine, implement and evaluate the impact of an AIAN culturally-specific cancer tool kit (Outreach Program).

Specific Aim 3:

Coordinate, implement and assess research that addresses the full continuum of cancer care research within AIAN communities nationally (Research Program).

Specific Aim 4:

Develop, implement and evaluate a community-driven cancer intervention trial (Research Program).

Specific Aim 5:

Initiate a new mentored fellowship program, “Hampton Faculty Fellows” (Training Program).

Specific Aim 6:

Collaborate with other CNPs working with AIAN communities and the Indigenous Cancer Network of Canada (Administrative Core).


Developing, implementing, and assessing cancer education among American Indian/Alaska Native community members and their health care providers.

  • Communities
  • Patients
  • Students
  • Researchers
  • Policymakers
  • Newsletters 


Improve Native community channels to the National Cancer Institute (NCI) so that research can be specifically focused on issues that affect Native people.

  • Survivors
  • Access to Care
  • Access to Clinic Trials
  • Policy Changes
  • Tribal Control


Utilizing community-based participatory research to increase community awareness and understanding of cancer by providing competitive grant funding for community based cancer projects.

  • Community Pilot Projects
  • Researchers
  • Access to Clinical Trials

Spirit of EAGLES 2014 Community Grant Awardees

Organization / Community:  Southeastern Oneida Tribal Services (Department of Oneida Tribe of Indians of Wisconsin)
Milwaukee Metropolitan Area

Project Director:  Mark Powless – Director, Southeastern Oneida Tribal Services

Project:  Smoking Cessation through Clinical Hypnosis:  Strengthening Our Minds, Our Bodies, Our Future


Organization / Community:  Great Plains Tribal Chairmen’s Health Board All North Dakota Tribal Communities

Project Director:  Richard Mousseau – Northern Plains Comprehensive Cancer Control Program Manager

Project:  Caregiver and Navigation for American Indians in North Dakota


Organization / Community:  University of Wisconsin – Native American Center for Health Professions (NACHP) – Madison, WI

Project Director:  Erik Brodt, MD – Assistant Professor Clinical Health Scholar, Director NACHP

Project:  Giminwaajimowininaanin – Our Good Stories


Organization / Community:  Custer Health – Standing Rock Reservation in North Dakota and South Dakota

Project Director:  Jodie Fetsch, RN – Director of Nursing

Project:  Standing Rock Men’s Prostate and Colorectal Cancer Screening Program


Organization / Community:  Arizona Board of Regents, University of Arizona  – Whispering Pines Campground, Prescott, Arizona

Project Director:  Francine C Gachupin, PhD, MPH, CIP – Assistant Professor, Family and Community Medicine, University of Arizona

Project:  Summer Medical Wellness Camp


Organization / Community:  Native Research Network, Inc.  – Phoenix, AZ

Project Director:  Stefanie Brooks – Coordinator

Project:  Native Research Network Cancer Awareness Training



Building infrastructures to support a nationwide AI/AN initiative and increase the number of AI/AN researchers, scientists, and medical students involved in cancer control activities in AI/AN communities.

  • Native Researchers Network
  • National Indian Health Board
  • Centers for Disease Control
  • Indian Health Service
  • National Cancer Institute
  • American Cancer Society
  • Lance Armstrong Foundation
  • Association of American Indian Physicians
  • American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES)



Increasing elders’ access to prevention methods, screening, treatment, and supportive care.

  • Most Underserved
  • Highest Risk
  • Great Wisdom to Share – Storyteller


Within the AI/AN community provides us with hope that individuals are living years beyond the diagnosis. Their stories are a powerful means of educating others about cancer.

  • Navigator Systems
  • Telling Our Stories
  • Educating Our Communities
  • Lance Armstrong Foundation Grants
  • Quality of Life Issues


Hampton Scholars Program- Funding to students who are dedicated to the use of knowledge to alleviate suffering and promote good health for all people and to assist and sustain the highest possible service to the health issues and conditions of Native peoples.

American Indian/Alaska Native Leadership Initiative on Cancer

The Spirit of EAGLES set up the Hampton Scholars program in 2001. This Scholarship program honors Dr. James Hampton (Chickasaw/Choctaw) who was the very first Native American medical oncologist. Hampton Scholars are selected competitively to identify students who are in the biologic, medical or social sciences who are dedicated to the use of knowledge to alleviate suffering and promote good health for all people and to assist and sustain the highest possible service to the health issues and conditions of Native peoples.

A Funding Source for:

Undergraduate, Post Baccalaureate, Graduate, and
Medical School/Medical Preparatory
Conference Assistance
Journal Publication Assistance
Medical School Application Assistance

Student Application DOWNLOAD