Learn about

The Quinault Indian Nation (QIN)

Toptana is fully-owned by QIN

Toptana Technologies was founded in 2022 by the Quinault Indian Nation. QIN has a long history of successful business ventures in the areas of hospitality, retail, manufacturing, and, above all, fishing. Our entrepreneurial spirit has fueled the prosperity of the Quinault people. This same forward-focused approach is the foundation of our newest endeavor, Toptana Technologies, through which we plan to bridge the digital divide in our region and usher in a new era for both our community and our neighbors in the Pacific Northwest. Our cable landing station and terrestrial backhaul network are just the beginning of what lies ahead. Get to know a bit more about QIN and the historic events that got us to where we are today.

At a glance

QIN Quick Facts


1 of 4 tribes in U.S. with coastal access and adjudicated ocean rights


3,000+ enrolled tribal members


Roughly ⅓ of the reservation lacks any type of internet access at home; the remaining ⅔ have access below the FCC’s minimum standards


QIN is the largest employer in Grays Harbor County, WA


Then to Now

Tribal nations inhabited North America and governed their own societies for thousands of years before the arrival of European settlers. Nearly 200 years after the United States started negotiating treaties with Tribal nations, Tribal governments were legally recognized as Sovereign Nations with decision-making authority over the programs that serve their citizens and communities.
A Sovereign Nation in the United States is the concept of the inherent authority of indigenous tribes to govern themselves within the borders of the United States.
Bureau of Indian Affairs is created. The new federal agency is responsible for implementing federal laws and policies pertaining to tribes throughout the continental United States and Alaska.
Treaty of Olympia (also known as the Quinault River Treaty) signed, establishing a 10,000-acre reservation around the village of Taholah to consolidate the Quileute, Queets, Hoh, Cowlitz, Chinook, and Quinault tribes onto shared land. Other historical territories are given up as part of the agreement.

The Quinault Treaty was one of the last of several signed during Washington Territory's first decade. Acquiring land cession from the Native Americans was one of Isaac Stevens' primary goals as the first governor of the territory.

Federal establishment of Quinault Indian Reservation in the Pacific Northwest. Federal decrees in the following decades will expand the reservation to accommodate the large number of tribes coinhabiting the territory.
Annual Report published by the U.S. Secretary of the Interior reaffirms the tribal right to self-rule.

“Representation chosen by the tribes themselves, and responsible to themselves, is the only mode of making the country acquainted with their condition and with our obligations to them.”

Talton v. Mays case establishes that the powers of self-government are not subject to the requirements of the U.S. Constitution.

This case reinforced the sovereign rights of the Cherokee Nation, as recognized by earlier treaties and affirmed that the self-governance powers of the Cherokee Nation were therefore independent of the United States Constitution.This case set an important precedent for the rights of other Sovereign Nations.
Quinault Bylaws Adopted, establishing rules for elected government and delineating responsibilities of the Tribal Council and Business Council.
Joe Delacruz, one of the Quinault Indian Nation’s most respected modern day leaders, is born. He will go on to serve a 22-year term as QIN President and become a nationally recognized figure in tribal leadership and issues of sovereignty.
Boldt Decision Handed Down

United States v. State of Washington is considered to be one of the biggest legal decisions to affirm the rights of Sovereign Nations in the 20th century. What was at stake went far beyond the origins of the dispute – the tribal right to fish. For the Quinault Indian Nation and surrounding tribes, it definitively settled any ambiguity around tribal sovereignty and solidified the rights to continue living our way of life, preserving our heritage, and governing ourselves with the autonomy that was rightfully and legally ours.
Quinault Constitution is adopted, establishing the rules of today’s QIN government.
The Self-Governance Act of 1988 is signed, transferring the development and operation of Bureau of Indian Affairs programs from the Federal Government to Indian tribes. The Act was later amended to also authorize activities in the Indian Health Service.
The Quinault Indian Nation, along with six other tribes, accept the responsibilities outlined in the Self-Governance Act to implement self-rule in tribal affairs. 
Fawn Sharp is elected as QIN’s second female President. She will later continue to serve in various elected positions within QIN, as well as later on as the President of the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI).
Pearl Capoeman-Baller is elected as QIN’s first female President. She will go on to serve 12 years in office as President.
Tyson Johnston is elected as QIN Vice President, serving a term alongside Fawn Sharp. One of his primary mandates is to create a forward-looking plan for the community’s future.
Having concluded that a cable landing station (CLS) and backhaul network will be required to provide the necessary access and capacity for a broadband network, due diligence begins with feasibility studies to explore subsea and terrestrial network possibilities for QIN. Additional feasibility studies will be conducted to fully understand project viability, environmental impacts and market demand. 
Guy Capoeman is elected 9th President of QIN, serving alongside Fawn Sharp as Vice President.
Governor Inslee and other Washington State leaders endorse Toptana’s connectivity mission and lend their support by granting an exemption and waiving the collection of state taxes on construction of the project.
The Quinault Indian Nation takes decisive steps to finally address the longstanding issue of the digital divide in the region. Plans for creating broadband infrastructure begin and a dedicated task force – the Ocean Fiber Team – gets started on a bold new project, led by Vice President Johnston.
Cable landing station and backhaul network concept design begins and environmental studies continue.
The Quinault Business Council formally creates the enterprise business, Toptana Technologies, to provide CLS connectivity to Asia-Pacific markets and backhaul network services from Seattle, WA to Hillsboro, OR.
Today (maybe?)
Text about the QIN going forward
fun facts

Did you know?

01. Toptana's Etymology

The brand name "Toptana" is derived from the Quinault word for "beach or shore." With over 27-miles of shoreline, Toptana's Cable Landing Station is located on one of the many acres of the Quinault Indian Nation's property.

03. Beliefs

QIN views the frog as the translator and sharer of knowledge, a symbol of communication. You will see the frog utilized in Toptana's important communications and thought leadership.

    04. Seven Generations View

    Quinault is rooted in a seven generation view - this means QIN thinks through decisions not just for the short-term, but for seven generations to come. You will see this line of thinking incorporated in Toptana's values and initiatives.

    05. Reservation

    Today’s QIN reservation encompasses over 200,00 square acres within Washington State. Taholah is the largest settlement on the reservation and is also the location of the tribal government's main offices.

    06. Food

    One of the most sacred foods for the Quinault is the sockeye salmon, known to tribal members as the “blueback”, a highly regarded species the Quinault people have fished sustainably for thousands of years.

    07. Language

    Quinault (Kʷínaył) is part of the Tsamosan (Olympic) branch of Coast Salish languages.

    Quinault (Kʷínaył)
    Hi, how are you
    I hope you are well
    vJOasinas kwiOawk
    Thank you
    See you later*
    *Quinault people never say goodbye
    08. Nature

    For the Quinault, the Western red cedar is the most prevalent and and revered species of tree. Fully grown trees can reach heights of over 200 feet, with a diameter of over 20 feet.