Published October 9, 2015
You may vote to make Rochelle Ripley the CNN Hero of the Year
ATLANTA—CNN announced on Thursday that Rochelle Ripley, a tribal citizen of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe, is among its Top 10 Heroes of 2015.
Ripley grew up listening to her full-blooded Lakota grandmother’s stories. Her grandmother taught her about their Lakota culture and the struggles faced by the community. Before her grandmother walked on, she asked Ripley to do one thing: Go home and help their people.
Today, Ripley is fulfilling that promise. Through her nonprofit, hawkwing, she has delivered an estimated $9 million in services and goods to the Lakota people.
Ripley’s group helps those in need with employment, safe housing and healthy food.
Four to five times a year, Ripley makes the trip from her home in Glastonbury, Connecticut, to South Dakota’s Cheyenne River Sioux Reservation. Working alongside the tribe, she and volunteers run a food bank and provide free health services, home renovations and educational opportunities.
Being named among the Top Ten Heroes of the Year, Ripley will already receive $10,000 to help with her work on the Cheyenne River Sioux Indian Reservaton. However, you can help her become the CNN Hero of the Year, which will bring an additional $100,000 to help her cause.
To vote for Ripley, go CNNheroes.com. You may vote once a day to help Ripley win the top honor.
Anderson Cooper will host “CNN Heroes: An All Star Tribute” on Sunday, December 6, 2015, which will feature all ten and name the CNN Hero of the Year.