Billy Mills
PRESIDENTIAL KEYNOTE

Born and raised on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota, he was orphaned by the age of 12 and sent to boarding schools. In high school, he become involved in distance running and earned an athletic scholarship to the University of Kansas and he made the NCAA Division I cross country All-American three times. After graduating from KU, he was commissioned as an officer in the U.S. Marine Corps., and continued training for the Olympic Team. He made the Olympic Team in two events, the marathon and the 10,000 meter run. He trained his body, mind and soul for “Peak Performance” and the world witnessed the Greatest upset in Olympic history unfold. Today, Billy Mills is an accomplished businessman, author and National Spokesperson for Running Strong for American Indian Youth an organization he co-founded in 1986. Through Running Strong, Billy has spent 35 years lifting other young men and women toward their aspirations and has championed wellness as well as unlocked opportunities in Native American communities across America. He has received numerous awards of high distinction and he was inducted into the inaugural class of Native American Hall of Fame.