Jim Pepper Native Arts Council:

Erin Buck and Dr. Allen Buck (Cherokee)

By Sean Aaron Cruz

The Jim Pepper Native Arts Festival board of directors has changed its organizational name to the Jim Pepper Native Arts Council and announced its organizing theme for 2018: Making the Invisible Visible, adopting the consensus language in the Portland Indian Leaders Roundtable document of that title.

The Council’s work will be focused on raising awareness of Portland’s Native American community and issues important to American Indians living in Oregon.

Jim Pepper Council welcomes new board members

  • Allen Buck, D.Min. Board President, (Cherokee) is pastor of Wilshire United Methodist Native American Fellowship in NE Portland. His doctorate is in Community Development.
  • Cassie Goodluck-Johnson, Board Secretary (Navajo) is a filmmaker and photographer with a B.A. in film. Her production work includes Grammy Awards, BET Hip Hop Awards, Prime Time Emmy Awards, 39th People’s Choice Awards.
  • Aurolyn Stwyer (Warm Springs) is former Vice Chair of the Tribal Council for the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs. She is the owner of Red Skye Trading Post and holds two MBAs. She is a championship powwow dancer and currently serves on the board of the Warm Springs Museum.

Continuing on the Board

  • Rebekah Wanke (Cherokee) Rebekah is a business owner in Parkrose. She organizes vendor relations and contracting, providing a balance of artists, community service and commercial booths.
  • Foster Kalama (Wasco/Warm Springs) is an educator, Columbia River fisherman, artist and carver, musician, flute player and a maker of flutes.
  • Robert Van Pelt (Umatilla) is a lifelong advocate for Native concerns and rights, and to love and care for natural life on Mother Earth.

Leaving the Board

  • Michael Conway served as Board Treasurer since 2015. A scientist, Michael supervises a food testing laboratory and is focusing on work and his family. We are very grateful for his service, attention to detail and big heart.
  • Flying Eagle Band
  • Gary Ogan (Cherokee) was inducted into the Oregon Music Hall of Fame in 2007 along with Jim Pepper (posthumously). A prolific songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer, Gary leads our Jim Pepper tribute group, the Flying Eagle Band. 

For more information, see our website: http://www.jimpepperfest.net/.

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