Noah Blue Elk Hotchkiss- Adaptive Empowerment: teachings of my Ancestors


Noah Blue Elk Hotchkiss was born August 18th 1998 in Durango CO. He is Southern Ute on his maternal side and Southern Cheyenne and Caddo on his Maternal Grandfather’s side. Noah was active in soccer, football, snowboarding and kayaking as a youth. On Nov. 16th 2009, a young man that had fallen asleep at the wheel struck Noah and his family head-on. His Stepmother and primary caregiver, Cassandra Yazzie (Navajo) was killed instantly, and Noah was no longer able to walk.


After months of Rehab Noah began to learn a new way to recreate and compete in earnest. He quickly became a proficient Mono-skier. In 2015 Noah became the first Native American national champion in downhill ski racing. His primary love however is basketball, where last year he averaged 19 points and 14 assists per game and is being recruited by the top College Teams in the country. His style is fast paced and reminiscent of other Rez Ball players like Shoni Schimmel. Noah also became the first paraplegic to complete the grueling seven-day mountain bike ride from Telluride, CO to Moab UT with the famous blind climber Eric Weihenmayer. In 2015 Noah was also selected by Olympian Billy Mills’ program Running Strong for Native American Youth to be a part of the Inaugural class of DreamStarters. Each Dreamstarter is given $10,000 to complete a project that benefits their Native community. Noah is hoping to use his success to inspire other disabled Native Americans to be active in sports by running basketball camps on reservations throughout the Southwest.


Noah continues to break barriers by participating in other adaptive sports as well including river rafting, tennis and most recently surfing. As the Native American Ambassador for Disabled Sports USA Noah is looking forward to developing the Tribal Adaptive Organization and being a part of a larger movement of inclusivity in Native America. His next goals are to play wheelchair basketball in college, pursue a Law Degree and represent both the USA and his Tribal Nations in Olympic competition.
In July 2015 Sports and Spokes Magazine, the nations premier magazine for adapted athletics, named Noah the 2015 Jr. Athlete of the year. He is the first Native American to be named in the 29 year history of the award.