This month, we talk to CPN child prosecutor Lisa Herbert about the Tribe’s court system, hear about the annual Shop with a Cop charity event and learn about credit counseling services from the Citizen Potawatomi Community Development Corporation as well as learn winter words in Potawatomi.

Credit counseling services help employees, Tribal members build futures

The Citizen Potawatomi Community Development Corporation offers credit-counseling services to Tribal employees, CPN members nationwide and any citizen of a federally-recognized tribe living in Oklahoma. CPCDC consumer lending coordinator Tina Herndon believes it is an underutilized resource.

“I have homeowners. I have business owners. I have counseled people who have accomplished a variety of financial goals because, without that baseline of information, you’re not making informed choices. And so now when they put me on their team, they’re adding an expert that has lived and breathed finance for over a decade,” she said.

Learn more about the Citizen Potawatomi Community Development Corporation and its services, including loans, business training and financial education, at Find the CPCDC on Facebook @cpncdfi and Twitter @CPCDC.

Shop with a Cop brings together community, law enforcement

CPN officer Orrin Beckham starts the evening shopping with the Napoleon family.

In early December, kids, guardians and law enforcement gathered at the Shawnee, Oklahoma, Walmart for Christmas cheer at the end of a very long and challenging year. The annual Shop with a Cop event gives children in need the chance to pick out gifts with a member of area police forces, including Citizen Potawatomi Nation officers.

“I think it’s a great environment for the kids to get to see the police officers in … and get to realize that, ‘Hey, they really are our friends; they’re here to help us.’ And gives them that opportunity to build that bond as well as provide them a Christmas that most of those kids probably would not get anything had it not been for the community of Shawnee pitching in like they do,” said event organizer Kenny Williams.

Contact Kenny Williams at for more information about Shop with a Cop. Visit the CPN Police Department online at

CPN’s child prosecutor on serving Indian Country

Lisa Herbert has worked for Citizen Potawatomi Nation as a child prosecutor for more than 10 years.

Lisa Herbert is CPN’s Child Prosecutor and has been a part of the Tribe’s court system for more than a decade. Her experience during nearly 30 years in law includes being a judge for both municipal courts and tribal courts for several Indigenous nations, a prosecutor, and a part of the Court of Indian Offenses appellate panel. She talked with Hownikan Podcast about her career and what sets tribal courts — specifically CPN — apart from other judicial systems in the U.S.

“That’s what the Nation is. Citizen Potawatomi, everybody is working together. We don’t have somebody saying, ‘Oh, that’s not my job.’ That is one thing you will never hear at Citizen Potawatomi, and I love that because if it’s for the Nation, it’s my job. And we all seem to understand that, and it makes things so much easier,” Herbert said.

Read more about CPN’s judicial system at

Learning Language

It’s time for Learning Language, when the CPN Language Department joins us to teach vocabulary, songs, stories and more. Today, Language Department Director Justin Neely teaches us some winter words in Potawatomi.

December 2020 – Learning Language
  • Agem (ahgum) — Snow
  • Agmose (aug moe say) — Walk around in snowshoes
  • Boni mget (bone eem get) — It’s snowing.
  • Boniswen (bone ees win) — Light snow
  • Gon (goen) — Snow (once it’s on the ground)
  • Gon pkwakwet (goen puk wah quit) — Snowball
  • Mche knebbon (muh chuck nuh buh bone) — Winter with no snow
  • Jigagwné’ge (jee gahg wuh nay gay) — Shovel snow he/she does
  • Nshiwpo (nuh shee oh poe) — Heavy snowfall
  • Pamponget (palm pone get) — Lightly snowing
  • Pongeze (pone guh zay) — He/she is so many years/snows old
  • Bbon (buh bone) — Winter
  • Mbo (muh bow) — Death
  • Yatsoke (yahy so kay) — Tell traditional stories he/she does
  • Shkagwnepo (shkahg wuh nuh poe) — Wet snow
  • Shpagwnegya (shpahg wuh nug yah) — Deep snow
  • Wabozo (wah bow zoe) — Rabbit
  • Mkom (muh comb) — Ice
  • Mkomikiwen (muh comb ee key win) — Icy ground
  • Mkomiswen (muh comb ees win) — It is icy.

For more information and opportunities with language, including self-paced classes, visit You can find an online dictionary at as well as videos on YouTube. There are also Potawatomi courses on the language-learning app Memrise.

Hownikan Podcast is produced and distributed by Citizen Potawatomi Nation’s Public Information Department. Subscribe to Hownikan Podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, SoundCloud and wherever you find your favorite shows. Find digital editions of the Tribal newspaper here.