30 May 2017

Yakama Nation Elder Russell Jim to Receive Honorary Doctorate from Heritage University

Yakama Nation Elder Russell Jim to Receive Honorary Doctorate from Heritage University

Author: David Mance  /  Categories: Campus  / 

Heritage University will confer an honorary doctorate degree upon Yakama Nation tribal elder, Mr. Russell Jim – Kiaux (his given name in Ichishkin, the native language of the Yakama) in recognition of his many contributions to the central Washington community as a leader, activist and steward of Native lands. The ceremony honoring Mr. Jim will take place Monday, June 5, 2017 at Heritage University.

Yakama Nation General Council Chairman Davis Washines – Yellowash said he is glad to see Heritage University bestow such an honor to Mr. Jim. “Russell Jim – Kiaux comes from a long line of family Yakama Nation leadership that not only reached across the Pacific Northwest and the United States, but globally as well, bringing awareness to critical issues utilizing his vast cultural knowledge,” said Mr. Washines. “Kiaux’s contribution to environmental justice is his legacy. When Kiaux talked, people listened and benefitted from what he said.”

Maxine Janis, the President’s Liaison for Native American Affairs at Heritage University, said the University wants to honor Mr. Jim’s commitment to the protection of the reserved treaty rights of the Yakama Nation. “In conferring this honorary doctorate, we recognize and honor, Kiaux as a traditional knowledge scholar.”

“From preserving Yakama cultural traditions to fighting to ensure ancestral lands of the Yakama people in central Washington remain safe from nuclear contamination, Russell Jim’s impact on the Yakama Nation and the Yakima Valley at large has been profound,” said Heritage University President Dr. John Bassett. “Heritage is honored to celebrate an individual who has contributed so much to our community.”

The ceremony honoring Mr. Jim will begin at 1:00 p.m. on June 5 in Smith Family Hall, located in the Arts and Sciences Center at Heritage University.

For more information please contact Maxine Janis at Janis_m@heritage.edu or Natalie Swan at (425) 495-5112.

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