Beatrice Medicine would have been 89 years old today; she was born at Wakpala on Standing Rock Reservation in 1923. Medicine was a Lakota Sioux anthropologist who advocated for Lakota women, children, minorities, the LGBT community, and other marginalized populations. She was the author of Learning to be an Anthropologist and Remaining Native, which was published in 2001.
Medicine was a woman of many accomplishments. She served as an expert witness in several trials pertaining to the rights of Native Americans, including the 1974 federal case brought against the individuals involved in the Wounded Knee occupation of 1973. She also helped draft legislation in Canada to protect the legal rights of Native families. She taught in primarily Native American colleges in the United States and Canada.
Medicine was much celebrated during her lifetime and received the Honoring Our Allies Award from the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, an award for Outstanding Woman of Color Award from the National Institute of Women of Color, the Ohana Award from the American Counseling Association, and an honorary Dr. of Humanities from Michigan State University.
Action: If you are interested in ensuring that our Native brothers and sisters have access to college, I strongly encourage you to donate to the American Indian College Fund.