Reuben Martinez

MA, Marine and Environmental Affairs, Nuu-chah-nulth
A man wearing a red sweater with Coast Salish designs stands and looks into the distance, arms crossed, in front of a pine tree on a sunny day. He wears glasses and has his dark hair pulled back. A sunbeam crosses the photo in front of him.


Reuben Martinez, MA student in Marine and Environmental Affairs, was awarded a FLAS fellowship to study Nuu-chah-nulth.

Reuben is a member of the Makah Nation on the Olympic Peninsula and a graduate of Western Washington University (WWU) with a bachelor’s degree in economics. Reuben spent his final year at WWU focusing primarily on renewable energy in Indigenous communities.

With his current work at Spark Northwest, Reuben supports Tribes throughout the Northwest as a Tribal Liaison. Notably, Reuben works to identify each tribe’s self-determined interests in renewable energy and works to connect Tribes with funding opportunities including applications for programs such as the Energy Transitions Initiative Partnership Project or the Washington State Commerce Grant.

Reuben is pursuing a Master’s degree at the School of Marine and Environmental Affairs. He was awarded a FLAS fellowship in Nuu-chah-nulth this summer and is studying with linguist and alum of the Jackson School, Adam Werle. Reuben hopes to connect Nuu-chah-nulth with marine law and policy, renewable energies, and sovereignty as means to support Indigenous Nations on a regional and international level as they plan for their futures.