Media Room


Corporate History:

The WeWán Institute was formally incorporated in June of 2015. Subsequently the WeWán Society was formed as the active support organization to grow the WeWán Institute‘s vision. It is the natural progression of the developmental steps of both founding partners, leading to the fruition of our mission and purpose.

FoundersThe WeWán InstituteThe WeWán SocietyOther Entities
The WeWán Institute and Society was founded by two Shawano Wisdom Keepers, Shawnee Elder Jim Great Elk Waters (kiji Wap’iti Nappe) and Seventh Generation Woman Kelly Talking Heron Pavlovic (Asháge Íkwe atn Minwábandánii), both descended of the Historic Shawnee People.
The WeWán Institute is a living repository for the ancient wisdom of First Peoples worldwide. We are a global repository and research organization that spans the world of First Cultures, with USA Corporate Offices in the tribal homelands of the North American Indigenous People – the Shawnee Blue Creek Hathwillikia and the Eire Panther Erieehronon People.

Our staff and experts work closely with First Culture Leaders and Elders to document and preserve the traditions, culture, history, and unique aspects of their ancestors.

The WeWán Purpose

Our purpose is to honor, preserve, and perpetuate the cultural teachings of the ages for all Indigenous First Peoples.

Our Vision

We envision an equitable and prosperous planet driven by the wise management of our ancient cultural resources. We aspire to create a world where these invaluable resources are secured for both the public at large as well as the descendants of the various First Cultures.

A virtual community of five Lodges whose members are studying the Path to Powáka. Each Lodge represents increasing depth of knowledge and experience. Members enjoy the camaraderie of others who are at the same level of study, mingle at Lodge events, and engage in discussions on their Powáka Path.
Other entities Incorporated within the WeWán Institute, now known as DBA’s:

  • Ancient Wisdom Series
  • As Long As The Grass
  • Atooyah  
  • Building your Business Seminars
  • Business Public Relations Seminars
  • Dreams Inspired Here
  • Eh’Dasse
  • Feather & Stone Consulting
  • Forest Edge Productions
  • Great Elk Speaks
  • Hidden Book Within
  • House of Spirits
  • Journey to the Center of You
  • Kokomundo Trading Company
  • The Business of Art Bootcamps
  • The Business of Stage Production
  • The UnBroken Cord
  • Through the Eyes of the Ancestors
  • Wisdom of the Ancestor’s Retreat
Executive Team Bio:

Jim Great Elk Waters and Kelly Talking Heron Pavlovic bring a combined business background of nearly three quarters of a century. They have authored and co-authored seven books, including one of the Top 100 Native American titles of All Times (View From the Medicine Lodge) and several books on business & marketing topics.

Jim has a long list of achievements in the marketing, and in the television and movie industry, with over 100 credits in acting, screen/playwriting and production, including the Disney production of Pocahontas. Prior to co-founding the WeWán Institute and Society, Kelly owned a successful marketing consultancy for over 20 years, working with international and multi-million dollar corporations. They both consider themselves to be “serialpreneurs.”

Together, the Shawano Wisdom Keepers represent the Balanced Life concept they bring to presentations and Path to Powaka Experiences. Male/female, rural/urban, arts/science, and the list goes on. Representing nearly a century of life experience, and Native/European/African descendancy, the stories they tell and the lessons they bring touch the hearts of audiences everywhere. 

They are both active members of the East of the River Shawnee Band of Ohio, the National Speakers Association (incl. Ohio Chapter), and practicing Midés with the Panji Sippe Midé Society. Jim is a proud Vietnam Navy veteran and a devoted Mason – Blue Lodge, York Rite, Knights Templar and Scottish Rite.

Past & Present LeadershipEducation & AwardsPublished TitlesCommunity & Charity
Owner/Founder/Executive
Ancient Wisdom Series
As Long As The Grass
Atooyah
Building your Business Seminars
Business Public Relations Seminars
Dreams Inspired Here
Eh’Dasse
Feather & Stone
Forest Edge Productions
Great Elk Speaks
Hidden Book Within
House of Spirits
Kokomundo Trading Company
The Business of Art Bootcamps
The Business of Stage Production
The UnBroken Cord
Through the Eyes of the Ancestors
Wisdom of the Ancestor’s Retreat
Volunteer Positions
National Speakers Association (Ohio Chapter – Secretary, VP Chapter Operations, VP Marketing, VP Professional Development)
Ohio Recognized Shawnee Tribe
East of the River Shawnee Band (Chief Emeritus)
Interfaith Council for the United Nations (Board VP)
United Nations Association - LA Pacific (Board VP)
Optimist International - South Gate (Board VP)
Lions International (Board)
B.P.O. Elks (Executive Committee)
Public Animal Welfare Society (Board)
Racers Who Care (Board VP)
The Next Level Workshop (Board)
The Entrepreneurs Club of America (President, local chapter)
International Referral Network (President, local chapter)
Boy Scouts of America (Cubmaster, Scoutmaster, District Commissioner)
Hawken School, Gates Mills, Ohio
BS Case Western University, Cleveland, Ohio
AE Ironworkers Apprentice Institute/Sinclair College, Dayton, Ohio
Various Credits & Continuing Education: University of Dayton, Dayton Art Institute, Long Beach City College, Cerritos College, UCLA Extension, Famous Artists & Writers, Egghead University, Ohio University

Bob McNabb SPY Award (2013, 2015, 2016)
Optimist of the Year Award
Optimist Presidential Award
Academy Award (Pocahontas, ensemble-soundtrack)
Emmy Nomination (Snow White, ensemble-animation)
WorldFest Gold Medal (Gold, Silver, and Bronze screenplay)
Military Commendations

View from the Medicine Lodge
Keep Calm and Get Social
Hidden Book Within
Hidden Book Within Workbook
Are We Having Fun Yet?
What Did You Just Say?
Feast Yourself
Was Your Grandmother an Indian Princess?
American Federation of Television and Radio Artists
American Federation of Musicians
Blue Lodge Masonry
Cleveland 2016 Host Committee Volunteer
East of the River Band Shawnee
Holden Arboretum
Knight York Cross of Honor
National Heritage Museum
National Speakers Association
National Speakers Association – Ohio Chapter
Panji Seppe Mide' Society
ScottishRite Masonry
Screen Actors Guild
The Wilds (partner with the Columbus Zoo)
YorkRite Masonry

Abbott Scholarships
Adopt America
Dyslexic Learning Centers
Grand Council Benevolent Fund
Knight Templar Eye Foundation
Ohio Masonic Home
Royal Arch Research