Mankiller Named First Sequoyah Fellow

Wilma Mankiller, former Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma, becomes Northeastern State University’s first Sequoyah Institute Fellow. She was introduced during a ceremony Sept. 4 at Seminary Hall.
NSU President Don Betz introduced Mankiller, who spoke of the issues she wished to address and goals she hoped to achieve as a Sequoyah Fellow.
NSU’s history and location made it an ideal place “to highlight the intellectual, economic and cultural achievements of native people,” Mankiller said.
“We have a rich Native American history,” she said. “Tahlequah is also the home of the great Cherokee Nation which continues to be a major educational, economic, social and cultural force here in Oklahoma. With Northeastern and the Cherokee Nation working together — anything is possible.”
Mentioning common challenges the Cherokees share with all native peoples globally, Mankiller said, “I hope to assist Northeastern State University in developing practical ways to become a major gathering place for indigenous people all over the world.”
She also expressed a desire to explore leadership issues, including indigenous and women’s leadership, “not just the theoretical aspects…but how you make it work.”
Mankiller believed the place of her introduction and site of her office were appropriate.
“I was especially happy to learn that my office would be in Seminary Hall,” she said, “because I think Seminary Hall not only symbolizes the Cherokee Nation’s commitment to the education of women, it also symbolizes the intellectual history of Northeastern.”

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