Tribal CEO wins top Native American award

INDIAN VILLAGE -- The National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development (NCAIED) has announced that Alabama-Coushatta Tribal Member Bryan Small has been named as a recipient of the 2015 Native American 40 Under 40 Award.
This prestigious award is bestowed upon individuals under the age of 40, nominated by members of their communities, who have demonstrated leadership, initiative, and dedication and made significant contributions in business and their community.
Small was honored during the 40th Annual Indian Progress in Business Awards (INPRO) Gala last week at the Buffalo Thunder Resort and Casino in Santa Fe, New Mexico. The awards were a part of the leading economic development event in Indian Country – the Reservation Economic Summit (RES).
"The 40 Under 40 award recipients are a diverse group of young men and women from across Indian Country who have all made invaluable contributions to their communities," said Derrick Watchman, NCAIED chairman. "We are proud to honor this extraordinary group of leaders, and I am excited to see what the future holds for them."
Small is the CEO of ACT Holdings – the economic development arm of the Alabama-Coushatta Tribe. He is also the CEO of Ochana Industries, an assembly and kitting business wholly owned by ACT Holdings and focused on federal and industrial opportunities, which he helped establish. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Richmond, a Master of Public Policy degree from Pepperdine University, and a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Houston.
"If we are to expand economic opportunity in Indian Country, we need innovative and entrepreneurial Native American leaders," said Gary Davis, president and CEO of NCAIED. "The 40 Under 40 recipients have all demonstrated their dedication to moving their communities forward, and I want to congratulate them on their achievements. This is a very deserving group."
Located 17 miles east of Livingston, the Alabama-Coushatta Indian Reservation is home to one of the three federally recognized tribes in Texas.