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Kateri, Lori Piestewa, Wilma Mankiller

In Honor of Women’s History Month: Just a Few of My Female Indigenous Inspirations

Gyasi Ross
3/28/13

Within Indigenous communities, the women lead.  They lead in our homes and our society, whether elected or not – that tradition has continued for millennia.

I’ve compiled a short, off-the-top-of-the-head-on-a-Thursday-afternoon list of women whom I see as icons and inspire me on a daily basis; to me, these women typify the amazing leadership that most (definitely not “all”—true recognition and admiration requires honesty) Indigenous women have the potential to exhibit. This list is not exhaustive, nor is it meant to be defining or the official “These are the Indigenous Women Who Deserve Recognition” list.  There are too many amazing Indigenous women who deserve that recognition to do that—I don’t want to get carpal tunnel.

This is my list—everyone should take a couple minutes to think of their own.  Everyone. Thank you, Indigenous woman.

Christine Quintasket
Kateri Tekakwitha
Anna Mae Aquash
Sylvia McAdam
Wanda BM
Marie Bear Medicine
Ingrid Washinawatok
Miranda B.L.
Mary Brave Bird
Wilma Mankiller
Paulette J.
Ada Deer
Shelley Young
Elizabeth Warren
Elizabeth Petrovich
Mom
Nina Wilson
Elouise Cobell
Deborah P.
Wendy
Georgia George
Allison Gottfriedson
Neoma
Jessica Gordon
Wilma Faye MWH
Ramona B.
Holly C.-M.
Winona LaDuke
Cecilia F.
Joan Kennerly
Rose Weaseltail
Cathy K.
Claudia K.
Lori Piestewa
Nina Pacari
Roberta Jamieson

I know there are many, many other deserving women—I propose that we all make a list the Indigenous women who are our influences and inspirations.

Gyasi Ross
Blackfeet Nation
Activist/Attorney/Author
Twitter: @BigIndianGyasi
www.cutbankcreekpress.com

 

 

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juanita rogowski's picture
juanita rogowski
Submitted by juanita rogowski on
Thank you......what a wonderful acknowledgement.....And may all Indigenous women not just Canadian or American....but all from around this beautiful Mother Earth arrive into their own power, to continue to nurture, support our young forward to be who they came here to become......Many Blessings!

Karen West Sanchez's picture
Karen West Sanchez
Submitted by Karen West Sanchez on
Thank you for striking through Elizabeth Warren's name. She is not a Cherokee, she has yet to show proof of any Native American heritage.

dave azure's picture
dave azure
Submitted by dave azure on
ahta

Anonymous's picture
Anonymous
Submitted by Anonymous on
Elizabeth Warren is a fraud. What is this guy thinking of? Winona LaDuke knows her stuff but she plays the angle for her own gain. Ask White Earth members, see and hear what answer they give of Winona LaDuke. WisGriz

Anonymous's picture
Anonymous
Submitted by Anonymous on
It would be good to include some Hawaiian Native women's names to this list.

aiahnichi ohoyo's picture
aiahnichi ohoyo
Submitted by aiahnichi ohoyo on
its really something to belong to a people who honor their women equally with their men...indigenous pacific island women should be on your list too...

Debbie Sequichie-Kerchee's picture
Debbie Sequichi...
Submitted by Debbie Sequichi... on
Joy Harjo

marion lonestar welch's picture
marion lonestar...
Submitted by marion lonestar... on
I have always been impressed by the strength of the Indian grandmothers.mine died before I got to know her but her sister loved and nutured me. her gentle love with a tablespoon of wisdom warms my memory of her yet.

marion lonestar welch's picture
marion lonestar...
Submitted by marion lonestar... on
I have always been impressed by the strength of the Indian grandmothers.mine died before I got to know her but her sister loved and nutured me. her gentle love with a tablespoon of wisdom warms my memory of her yet.
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