Ellie Mitchell


FacultyCenter for Language Teaching AdvancementAmerican Indian and Indigenous Studies

Community Outreach Liaison
Center for Language Teaching Advancement


A. Ellie Mitchell is Anishinaabe (Eagle Clan), an enrolled citizen of the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe of Michigan. Ellie serves as Indigenous Community Outreach Liaison on the Less Commonly Taught Languages (LCTL) and Indigenous Languages Partnership, funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, housed in the Center for Language Teaching Advancement (CeLTA).

Ellie was amongst the first generation in over a century to be educated within her tribal community, a situation caused by genocidal education policies imposed upon American Indians. She was a member of the inaugural class of the Saginaw Chippewa Academy, where she attended pre-kindergarten through 8th Grade. While there, Ellie developed a love for Anishinaabemowin (Anishinaabe language). Motivated by her desire to learn Anishinaabemowin, Ellie received a Bachelor of Arts in linguistics from Michigan State University, where she was awarded a Morris K Udall Scholarship in recognition of her work on Anishinaabemowin revitalization.

After finishing her undergraduate education, Ellie founded Bead & Powwow Supply, and spent several years traveling the powwow trail, selling Indigenous art and craft supplies throughout the United States. During that time, she began writing fiction and poetry. Research for her creative writing led her to complete a Master of Arts in humanities from Central Michigan University. Her coursework focused on Anishinaabe history (pre-contact to treaty negotiation), Great Lakes archaeology, literature, and creative writing. Ellie’s work has appeared in Yellow Medicine Review and Tribal Observer. She is currently writing her first novel.

Ellie served on the Board of Directors of the Ziibiwing Center of Anishinaabe Culture & Lifeways for over eight years, including four years as chairperson. She was a member of the Saginaw Chippewa delegation to the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in 2016. She is a Jingle Dress Dancer, a Northern Traditional Dancer, and a bead artist.