Chickasaw Nation presents Arts and Culture Awards, releases three new books

By: From Wire Reports
By: From Wire Reports

Dr. Shannon Speed Named Dynamic Woman of the Year

A committed advocate of indigenous people, a native speaker of the Chickasaw language, and Southeastern artists and authors were among those recognized during the Chickasaw Nation Arts and Culture Award ceremony Oct. 3 at the Chickasaw Cultural Center, Sulphur, Okla.

Dr. Shannon Speed, a dedicated Chickasaw anthropologist, was named the 2013 Dynamic Woman of the Year by Chickasaw Nation Governor Bill Anoatubby.

Dr. Speed’s distinguished career has been dedicated to research and teaching on Native peoples. She has worked for the last two decades in Mexico with Mayan communities, and her research and teaching interests include indigenous politics, indigenous women’s rights, human rights, indigenous-state relations, law and social systems, indigenous migration, and activist research.

Dr. Speed is the epitome of a dynamic Chickasaw woman,” said Gov. Anoatubby. “She is dedicated to promoting social justice and equality through research and education. Her work is helping develop a greater understanding of indigenous cultures which could help enhance the quality of life of Native people around the world.”

As a Chickasaw citizen with decades of experience working with indigenous people in Latin America, Dr. Speed has a long-standing interest in fostering dialogues among indigenous peoples.

Dr. Speed, a resident of Austin, Texas, is also a committed advocate of collaborative research, working in Mexico and in Texas. She also coordinates the Indigenous Women Migrants Oral Histories Project. She played a key role in founding the Indigenous Studies Initiative at the University of Texas at Austin, which she also directed from its inception in 2007.

She is an accomplished author, publishing numerous books and edited volumes in English and Spanish.

Dr. Speed’s current research is on indigenous Latin American women migrants and gender violence, and she has two books in progress.

She holds a B.A. degree in International Relations from San Francisco State University, an M.A. in Latin American Studies from the University of Texas at Austin, and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Anthropology and Native American Studies from the University of California, Davis. She is currently an Associate Professor of Anthropology and Director of Native American and Indigenous Studies and has recently served as Assistant Vice President for Community Engagement at the University of Texas at Austin. She is also active in the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association.

Dr. Speed is a proud Chickasaw and has been part of the Chickasaw Community Council of Central Texas since 2006. She has served as an at-large board member and as secretary of the board.

A Los Angeles native, Dr. Speed is the granddaughter of Dawes enrollees Samuel Joseph Speed (Chickasaw) and Ottilie Josephine “Jo” Reichert (Choctaw).

Established in 2006, the Dynamic Woman of the Year Award honors Chickasaw women who have made significant contributions to the Nation, serves as role-models and who have made a difference in the lives others, enriching their communities and society at large.

Jerry Imotichey, native Chickasaw speaker, was honored with the esteemed 2013 Silver Feather Award.

A life-long resident of Fillmore, Okla., Mr. Imotichey is a Chickasaw native speaker who currently facilitates the Chickasaw language class at East Central University, Ada. An active member of the Chickasaw language committee, Mr. Imotichey co-authored Anompilbashsha Asilhha Holisso: Chickasaw Prayer Book, and serves as translator for the Glenda Galvan series of Chickasaw children’s stories.

“Mr. Imotichey demonstrates a great understanding of the importance of Chickasaw language revitalization and preservation. He is a worthy recipient of the Silver Feather Award,” said Gov. Anoatubby.

Mr. Imotichey accepted his award, one of the highest honors given by the Chickasaw Nation, thanking those who encouraged him to share the Chickasaw language.

The Silver Feather Award honors Chickasaws who have committed their lives to the preservation and revitalization of Chickasaw culture, language and life ways. Created in 1999, past recipients include: Adam Walker, Pauline Walker, Charlie Carter, Juanita Byars, Sim Greenwood, Geneva Holman, Leerene Frazier, Rose Jefferson, Stanley Smith, Marie Beck, Jerry Underwood, Catherine Pickens Willmond, Weldon Fulsom and Emma McLeod.

Lisa Nelson, C.J. Aducci, Brian Nelson and Kari Chew were each honored with Heritage Preservation Research Awards.

Ms. Nelson and Mr. Aducci were honored with Chickasaw Press Heritage Preservation Awards and Mr. Nelson and Ms. Chew received White Dog Press Awards.

Ms. Nelson received the Best Unpublished Article award for his article “Moving Forward with Indian Portrayals through Chickasaw film”. Ms. Nelson is a student at East Central University pursuing a bachelor’s degree in English. She previously served as the director of Pueblo Community College Children’s Theatre program.

Mr. Aducci won the Best Doctoral Dissertation award for his dissertation entitled “Itt’ at Skka’ Wayya’ahookya Ikkobaffo (Trees Bend, but Don’t Break): Chickasaw Family Stories of Historical Trauma and Resilience Across the Generations.” Mr. Aducci earned his doctorate in human ecology with a specialization in marriage and family counseling from Kansas State University in May 2013. He currently serves as program manager for Chickasaw Nation Office of Strong Family Development.

Mr. Nelson received the Ikbi Award – Short Story for “All Chickasaw Nine,” which features contemporary Chickasaw characters. Mr. Nelson lives in Weatherford, Texas with his wife and three children.

Ms. Chew won the Iholba Award – Poetry for “Four Directions.” She is pursuing a doctorate in education at the University of Arizona.

SEASAM winners

Awards were also presented to winners of the Southeastern Art Show and Market.

The top winners in each category were:

Best in Show – Troy Jackson

Best in Division, Cultural – Lisa Rutherford

Best in Division, 3-D art – Scott Roberts

Best in Division, 2-D art – Brenda Kingery

Youth Art Show Winners:

Best in Show – Haley Bishop

Best in 2-D art – Joshua Tingle

Best in 3-D art – Mia Olson

Best in Cultural Division – Me-Way-She Greenwood

The show is open to all artists of Southeast and Woodlands tribes. The winning artworks, as well as works 59 talented artists, will be showcased Friday - Saturday, Oct. 4-5, at Chickasaw Nation Capitol grounds during the 2013 Annual Meeting and Festival.

Also during the awards ceremony, three new Chickasaw Press publications were released.

“Chikasha Stories, Volume Three: Shared Wisdom,” by Glenda Galvan and illustrated by Jeannie Barbour is the final volume in the award-winning three-part series. Chickasaw storyteller, Glenda Galvan shares stories with the original, tradition-inspired illustrations by Chickasaw artist, Jeannie Barbour. These beautiful stories are told in Chickasaw and English.

“Riding Out The Storm: 19th Century Chickasaw Governors, Their Lives and Intellectual Legacy,” by Dr. Philip Carroll Morgan. Dr. Morgan takes a unique approach as he profiles three Chickasaw governors: Cyrus Harris, Winchester Colbert and William L. Byrd. Using literary backdrops that directly relate to each man’s experiences, Morgan draws new insight as he explores gubernatorial connections.

“Footprints Still Whispering In The Wind” by Margie Testerman, illustrations by Chickasaw children. This collection of poems by Chickasaw elder, Margie Testerman, honors her heritage and the natural world that influenced every aspect of her ancestors’ lives. Each poem is illustrated by a Chickasaw child, giving a glimpse into their world of imaginations and wonder.

For more information on the books and other Chickasaw Press publications, please visit www.chickasawpress.com.


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