“You gotta watch Yellowstone,” said Robert Doore, Principal Stakeholder Engagement Representative at Marathon Petroleum. “It’s really a great show.”
Doore is talking about Paramount Network’s series Yellowstone, a modern-day Western that incorporates a more realistic portrayal of Native Americans into the show’s storyline, as opposed to the stereotypes that were more commonly featured in the traditional Western narratives. It gives viewers a more accurate view of life on tribal lands, which it strives to get right by consulting with the tribes who live there.
Doore is also working to give a more accurate view of the lives of indigenous people. Robert Doore’s legal name is Robert Rides at the Door, or Eee Tooks Dough Toop Pee, which in the Blackfeet language translates to He Who Rides From The Enemy’s Door. He explains that his last name was shortened to Doore to be competitive in mainstream society, but he’ll never forget who he is. Doore was raised on the Blackfeet Reservation in Browning, Montana, and is a member of the Blackfeet Nation. As the former Director of Guest Experience at FedExField just outside Washington, D.C., he was the highest ranking Native American in the NFL since the first president of the NFL, Jim Thorpe, in the early 1920s.
Doore joined Marathon Petroleum in February in a hybrid role connecting Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) and Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DE&I). He’s based at the company’s Denver office but travels to provide employee training sessions and build relationships with community groups across the country.
“I’m so excited about the opportunity to help bring in talent. Black and brown talent. Women. Indigenous people. There’s an opportunity to impact the company but also society and the country as a whole,” said Doore. “People don’t understand the tremendous positive impact we can have on the communities of color.”
Hall of Fame
Doore is one of the first Indigenous people to be inducted into the Montana Football Hall of Fame (MTFHOF). In June, he was honored in front of his family, his community and other members of the 2022 Hall of Fame class. Rick Halmes, Chairman of the MTFHOF, shared that NFL veteran coach Marty Mornhinweg nominated Doore for the honor.
“Robert’s story is truly unique and amazing, and I would also add historic, real, inspiring and still being written.”
“Marty was inducted into the MTFHOF in 2021 and knew of Robert after a national story he saw. Marty immediately nominated Robert not only for the work he has done but also for what he represents and is so inspiring for so many, especially people with Indigenous backgrounds,” said Halmes. “Robert’s story is truly unique and amazing, and I would also add historic, real, inspiring and still being written.”
Doore’s love of sports began early as an athlete playing high school football, basketball, cross country and track and field in in his hometown of Browning.
At the Hall of Fame induction ceremony, his parents said they could not have been prouder watching their son be honored for his achievements.
“My son Robert has always shown inspiration and enthusiasm in whatever endeavor he engages in,” said Smokey Rides at the Door, Doore’s father. “His professionalism and personal perseverance has contributed enormous significance for many future generations of Native young people, and it comes directly from the heart."
His mother was also overwhelmed with emotions when speaking of Doore’s accomplishments saying she’s watched him grow into a “contemporary Native man in a traditional world.”
“To have our son receive and achieve this honor brings absolute elation,” said Darnell Rides at the Door, Doore’s mother. “Dignity alone triggers a high spirit, heart lightness, total joy, immense pride and pure love."
Tribal Relations Training
Marathon Petroleum actively engages with 21 tribal communities across the U.S. In Doore’s hybrid role, he’s helping provide cultural awareness education programs to improve employees’ understanding of Indigenous people’s history, traditions, rights and culture. During a Tribal Relations training for Marathon Petroleum employees in San Antonio, Doore discussed the perspective of the tribal communities, cultural sensitivities, etiquette and history. Part of his presentation featured certain words and phrases that people may not know are inappropriate and culturally insensitive. For example, the phrase ‘pow wow’ is a sacred social gathering not a term for a team meeting or brainstorm session. Saying that someone is ”going off the reservation” is a derogatory term for behaving unexpectedly or disruptively; however, it was originally used when Native peoples were confined to reservations by the government and could be criminally charged for leaving. Doore stresses that it is important to learn the meaning behind hurtful phrases and teach others in a way that makes us all better.
“Robert is a great addition to the team not only because of his background and professional experiences, but he brings great energy to this role,” said Karen Beadle, VP of ESG & Stakeholder Engagement at Marathon Petroleum. “He is an adept storyteller, and that enables him to get through to people and help them understand and remember his presentations. It’s an extremely effective way to educate others.”
Doore acknowledges that we must be able to openly talk about things, and it won’t always be “roses and rainbows.” He says that having the safe space to have these conversations is a big part of our culture and where we’ll see the biggest changes. Marathon Petroleum believes in fostering a diverse, equitable and inclusive workplace.
“As a member of the Blackfeet Nation, Robert brings real perspective and knowledge to his role. His passion and advocacy for Indigenous people and people of color in our communities is truly inspiring. DE&I will definitely benefit from his meaningful contributions to the company,” said Germaine Hunter, VP of Talent Acquisition and DE&I at Marathon Petroleum.
From the NFL to the Montana Football Hall of Fame and Marathon Petroleum, Doore stays focused on bringing his whole self to work and sharing the journey with others along the way.
“Our DE&I focus will absolutely allow us to grow as a company and bring new ideas and people to the table,” said Doore. “We aren’t a melting pot. We are a salad. I can be the croutons. You can be the bacon bits. It works.”