Wilhelm Meya

Language is

For two decades Wilhelm Meya has advocated
for the future of Indigenous languages.


The Language Conservancy

Since 2005, I’ve worked as CEO and Chairman of The Language Conservancy, a nonprofit organization leading the resurgence and revitalization of Indigenous languages by developing innovative technologies and learning materials, conducting educational events, and raising awareness about the escalating loss of language worldwide. The Language Conservancy currently works with more than 50 Indigenous language communities throughout the U.S., Canada, Mexico, and Australia.

I’ve also served as Executive Director and Chairman for the Lakota Language Consortium since 2004. The Lakota Language Consortium is a nonprofit organization of Lakota community members, educators, and linguists working to revitalize the Lakota Language through the development of educational materials and technologies and the training of teachers. The Consortium also supports learners through the production of inventive media productions like the Lakota version of The Berenstain Bears and the documentary, Rising Voices.

Stemming the tide of Indigenous language loss around the world

Language is connection. Language is belonging and identity. It's the cornerstone of community and the lifeblood of culture. And language is a precious resource.

When a speech community dies, the world loses a bundle of ideas unique to that culture and a circle of concepts that could only be expressed in that language. The stories that once brought countless generations of a community together never again quicken hearts and minds.

Unless we act, within the next 100 years, 90% of our world’s 7,000 languages will become extinct. In the United States alone, of the original 400 to 500 languages once spoken from the Pacific to the Atlantic, only about a dozen are currently receiving the resources they need to survive beyond 2050.

I am on a mission to revitalize, support, and advocate for Indigenous and endangered languages around the world. I founded The Language Conservancy, a non-profit organization that focuses on teaching and preserving indigenous languages worldwide, to do just this.

Get in touch.

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Are you a member of a community that The Language Conservancy can support?

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