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Native American Heritage

When recognizing contributions to our country, the First Americans must be remembered.

Annie Dodge Wauneka (1907-1997): Improved Health Standards for the Navajo People

  • Worked to bridge gap between native healers and medical doctors in an effort to eradicate tuberculosis among the NavajosAnnie W 1
  • Awarded Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1963
  • Second woman elected to serve on the Navajo Tribal Council (1951-1978)

 Annie Dodge Wauneka grew up traveling with her father, the tribal chief, throughout the Navajo Nation and was made highly aware of the health needs of the Navajo people. Her life’s work was improving public health standards.

Sarah Winnemucca (ca. 1844-1891) Educator and Advocate for Native Americans

Documented her life as a Native American in an autobiographical book published in 1883

Spoke forcefully for her people at a time when women had no political clout at all

Sarahw 1Sarah Winnemucca was born near Humboldt Lake in western Nevada, the daughter of Chief Winnemucca and his wife, Tuboitonie.  The family members were part of the Paiute People.  At the time, the Northern Paiutes and Washos Indians were the only inhabitants of western Nevada.

Wilma Mankiller (1945-2010)

Native American community activist, tribal chief and tribal legislator
Wilma Mankiller served her people as a Cherokee Chief from 1985-95, making her the first woman to lead a major tribe. Her work was noted nationally, and in 1998 she was awarded a Presidential Medal of Freedom.

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