Pequot Museum Presents Indigenous Voices Series Event, “Contemporary Indigenous Women: In the Workplace and Beyond”

Published October 29, 2019

Nov. 2 Panel Discussion Illuminates Native Women’s Roles in Bridging Traditional Cultures and Values with Today’s Complex Social Climate 

MASHANTUCKET, Conn. — The Mashantucket Pequot Museum & Research Center announced today it will host the Indigenous Voices Series panel discussion, “Contemporary Indigenous Women: In the Workplace and Beyond.”

Join us on Sat., Nov. 2, from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. for a lively discussion with some of the Northeast’s premier Native American academics, scholars, professionals and historians. The event will illuminate Native women’s roles in bridging traditional cultures and values with today’s complex social climate, particularly in professional spaces. Attendance is free and open to the public.

This moderated panel will delve into the ways individuals’ multiple identities converge and the effects that can have on their work. Panelists will share personal experiences, ambitions, challenges and achievements in their respective fields. The evening will conclude with an interactive, audience-led question and answer segment.

“We’re delighted to assemble this prestigious group of academics and professionals for an insightful, impactful discussion,” said Joe Baker, director of the Pequot Museum. “Don’t miss this unique opportunity to hear from and engage with indigenous women and men who balance their identities and professional goals in today’s complex society.”

About the panelists

Marissa Turnbull (Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation) is the Tribal Historic Preservation Officer (THPO) and the appointed NAGPRA specialist for the Mashantucket (Western) Pequot Tribe.

endawnis Spears (Diné, Ojibwe, Chickasaw, Choctaw) is the director of outreach and programming as well as a founding member of the Akomawt Educational Initiative, an indigenous education support service and interpretive consultancy.

Ron Welburn (Gingaskin Cherokee, Assateague, Lenape) is a former professor at UMass Amherst who focuses on Native American and Eastern Native literatures, ethnohistories and identities, as well as American and Indigenous studies’ theories and methods.

Tawnii Cooper-Smith, Esq. (Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation) is senior legal counsel in the Office of Legal Counsel for the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation. She also serves on the MPTN Judicial Committee, MPTN Finance Committee, MPTN Election Team and MPTN Constitutional Review Team.

The panel will be moderated by Cliff Sebastian, IV (Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation), the Pequot Museum’s marketing and development director.

The Indigenous Voices Series panel discussion concludes the Pequot Museum’s Voices of Native Women, a series of fall events showcasing the extraordinary lives and identities of contemporary Native American women. For more information please visit the museum’s events page.

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