Suzan Harjo, Cheyenne & Hodulgee Muscogee, moderated a symposium in February at the National Museum of the American Indian on “Racist Stereotypes and Cultural Appropriation in American Sports.” This storytelling exercise changed the debate about mascots.
CONCHO, OKLAHOMA— The Cheyenne & Arapaho Tribes is pleased to welcome tribal member and Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient Dr. Suzan Shown Harjo with a homecoming celebration. Dr. Harjo is a tribal citizen of the Cheyenne & Arapaho Tribe.
The Homecoming Celebration will take place Friday, April 17, 2015 at 4:00 p.m.-CDT at the Concho Community Hall in Concho, Oklahoma.
Dr. Harjo was presented the Presidential Medal of Freedom at the White House by President Barack Obama last year on November 24, 2014. The Presidential Medal of Freedom is the Nation’s highest civilian honor, presented to individuals who have made especially meritorious contributions to the security or national interests of the United States, to world peace, or to cultural or other significant public or private endeavors.
Among her many accomplishments, Harjo has worked tirelessly for decades to get sport teams to drop names that promote negative American Indian stereotypes. For three decades, Harjo has worked to have the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office revoke the Washington Redsk*ns filed in September 1992. That decision was upheld by the courts in June of 2014.
In addition to her vast activism on behalf of American Indians, Dr. Harjo is also a writer and curator who has advocated for improving the lives of Native peoples throughout her career.
As a member of the Carter Administration and as current president of the Morning Star Institute, she has been a key figure in many important Indian legislative battles, including the passage of the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act and the American Indian Religious Freedom Act.