Native Star Foundation History and Leadership
The Native Star Foundation (NSF) was established in 2013 by Mr. Carrillo, an enrolled member of the Tule River Indian Tribe. Mr. Carrillo incorporated NSF in 2018 in the State of California as a domestic nonprofit corporation – 501(c)(3). Stewarded by a Board of Directors who are tribal representatives of the Bishop Paiute, Santa Ynez Chumash, and Tule River Indian Tribes, NSF’s mission is to generate and promote the healthy mindsets of Native youth through cultural practices. Specifically, by nurturing their knowledge and understanding that health is inseparable from the health of natural environment.
Where We Help
The Native Star Foundation serves Native youth in California and the western region.
Board of Directors
President, Native Star Foundation
Julian F. Behill is our newly appointed Native Star President and a Tribal descendant of Chalon and Esselen Nations. He is a former Chairman of the Chalon Indian Nation. Mr. Behill has worked and volunteered in Indian Country for over 20 plus years. He also worked for the Nüümü Yadoha Language Program under Owens Valley Career Development Center for 10 plus years. He recently accepted the position of Elders Director for the Santa Rosa Rancheria Tachi Yokut Tribe. Mr. Behill is a traditional practitioner who enjoys sharing his knowledge with the communities he serves and has presented at various local schools/organizations. He has worked with multiple Tribes and organizations throughout the Central Valley.
Willie J. Carrillo
Treasurer, Native Star Foundation
Willie J. Carrillo, a former Vice President of the Pacific Region for the National Congress of American Indians. Mr. Carrillo is a former Tribal Council member of the Tule River Yokuts Tribe of California near Porterville, CA. Mr. Carrillo also served as former President of the California Indian Education Association, as well as the Board of Trustees Chairperson for D-Q University, California’s former Tribal College. Current B&GCA CEO for the Tule River Tribe.
Secretary, Native Star Foundation
Nakia Zavalla is a tribal descendant of the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians. Ms. Zavalla has been the Culture and Language Director for her Tribe the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians since 2007. Nakia manages all aspects of the cultural department, including cultural programs, language, and public cultural education. Growing up on her reservation and in her Tribe's traditional ways, she brings a range of knowledge to her position and a passion for her Tribe's language and culture. Nakia enjoys working with people of all ages in her Tribe and values her time spent with her elders, and continuing to learning more about the culture and history of her Chumash people. She is also a proud mother of two daughter’s Tani and Hannah.
In her position, Ms. Zavalla is credited with creating the Sʰamala Language Apprentice Program and in the development and passing of the California legislation (AB 544 and AB 163) that became the Teaching Credential: American Indian Languages and Culture. In 2012, Ms. Zavalla received her Teaching Credential: American Indian Languages by the State of California in the Sʰamala Language. Ms. Zavalla has served for the past seven years on the planning committee for the California Conference on American Indian Education. She also serves on the California Living Language Circle Conference planning committee. In 2019 Ms. Zavalla earned her Master's Degree in Cultural Sustainability from Goucher College in Baltimore, Maryland. She is a committed advocate of indigenous language and cultural survival.
Executive Director, Native Star Foundation
Kellie Carrillo is an enrolled member of the Tule River Tribe in Porterville, Ca, she is the mother of two daughters and has two grandchildren. Ms. Carrillo has a B.A. degree from Cal State University, Bakersfield with major in Cultural Anthropology. Both personally and professionally, she has been dedicated to the improvement of Indian communities, specifically to California Indian families. Throughout her career the focus has been on Indian education, youth leadership and cultural and language preservation; later she transitioned into administration roles as the Deputy, then Tribal Administrator for her Tribe. Ms. Carrillo currently serves as the Executive Director for Native Star Foundation, in addition to her work with NSF, she continues to work with multiple Tribal governments to provide tribal administrative and community development support.
Early in life, Kellie spent her childhood years traveling with her father and younger siblings throughout the state while advocacy work for California Indians was taking place throughout many communities, those years became transformational for her family. She had the opportunity to develop lifelong relationships that remain with her today, as she continues to work in some of those same communities, with the same people.
Today Ms. Carrillo continues to work building partnerships with tribal communities throughout the state and serves on various local committees. During the pandemic she made the decision to campaign for city council and in November 2020 was elected as the first Native American to serve as a Porterville City Councilmember. Currently Ms. Carrillo serves as the Vice Mayor for the City of Porterville.
Jackie Kaslow, DrPH, MPH
Project Director, Red Medicine Tobacco Prevention Program
Dr. Kaslow serves as the Red Medicine Tobacco Prevention Project (RMTPP), Project Director. Dr. Kaslow’s tribal lineage is Miwok, Nissenan-Maidu, and Pit River.
Dr. Kaslow has 20 years’ experience in public health and health care services delivery. Her career in health began at UCLA in 1998 in clinic operations, continuing education for health professionals, and bench to clinic translational research. In 2008, she joined the California Rural Indian Health Board (CRIHB) as the Director of Family and Community Health Services. In 2014, she left CRIHB and pursued her doctorate in public health. In 2017, she resumed her public health practice at UCD Center for Health Care Policy Research on the CA Quits project. CA Quits is a statewide health care systems change initiative to integrate evidence-based tobacco treatment in publicly funded hospital clinic systems and FQHC.
BA: English/Geography, Environmental Sciences, UCLA (1996)
MPH, Community Health Sciences: UCLA (2005)
DrPH, Harvard School of Public Health (2018)