Office for Inclusive Community

Division of Student Services


#ChangeTheName: REDSK*NS

Native American Mascots and the Perpetuation of Stereotypes

indians     blackhawks

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Traditional Native American dancing and drumming, performed by members of the Native American Youth & Family Center.



Gregg Deal (Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe) is an artist/activist and fourteen year resident of the Washington DC metro area. Deal's visual work deals with issues of misappropriation, popular culture, and various other issues in Indian Country. More recently, Deal has been working on a performance art piece called The Last American Indian On Earth, a project that deals with identity and stereotypes as well as illustrating the way the general American public see, act, treat, and consider Native people through documenting it in photography and film. Deal has appeared in the Washington Post and Huffington Post for his artistic work, on local news stations concerning the mascot issue, talked openly about issues for rallies and protests, and has appeared on various radio shows around the country for his work related to issues in Indian Country.


Se-ah-dom Edmo (Shoshone-Bannock, Nez Perce, & Yakama) was born and raised in the Portland-Metro area and has strong ties with local and regional Native communities. She has worked extensively with AmeriCorps, OMSI, and OHSU's School of Medicine where she coordinated the Diversity Achievement Programs assisting students from groups underrepresented in medicine to pursue medical careers. She is coordinator of the Indigenous Ways of Knowing program at Lewis & Clark College, and vice president of the Oregon Indian Education Association.


Adrienne Keene (Cherokee Nation) is a doctoral candidate and educational researcher at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Her research focuses on college access for Native students and the role of higher education in nation building of Native communities. She is following a small group of Native college students as they navigate their first year, looking at the role of College Horizons, a precollege access program for Native students, and the ways this program has influenced the college application, enrollment, and transition processes of these students. Adrienne is also an activist and blogger; her blog Native Appropriations focuses on representations of Indigenous peoples in the media and pop culture.


Dr. Cornel Pewewardy (Comanche & Kiowa) is Professor and Director of the Indigenous Nations Studies Program at Portland State University. In his professional career, Dr. Pewewardy has received numerous transformational leadership awards in teaching, research, and service. Recently, Dr. Pewewardy was named the 2012 John Eliot Allen Outstanding Teacher Award given by the College of Liberal Arts and Science at Portland State University. In 2011 he was selected the Carl A. Grant Multicultural Research Award from the National Association for Multicultural Education, voted the 2011 President's Diversity Award from Portland State University, and named the 2011 Teacher of the Year by the Oregon Indian Education Association.


Charlene Teters (Spokane) is an Associate Professor of Studio Arts at the Institute of American Indian Arts. She is known for her activism and multimedia art. Charlene exhibits internationally, creating multimedia installations that examine the social presumptions and portrayals of Indian people in pop culture and media. She was a featured artist this fall in an exhibition entitled "Agitated Histories" at SITE Santa Fe. Her artwork expresses her personal and political views about America's dehumanization of Indian Peoples. In 1997 Teters was featured in the film In Whose Honor? that traces the history of Chief Illiniwek at the University of Illinois, and other popular depictions of Native Americans in school athletics and professional sports franchises across the country. 

Vine Deloria Jr.

Vine Deloria Jr. was one of the preeminent intellectuals of the 20th century, whose work brought attention to the importance of place and traditions within Native American communities. Founded in 2007, this series honors Deloria’s work and is a collaborative effort between the Office for Inclusive Community and the Office for Institutional Diversity.