18 Jul 2017

Yakama Nation Tribal Elder Receives Honorary Doctorate

Author: Wings  /  Categories: Campus, Wings  / 

Russell JimHeritage University conferred an honorary doctorate degree upon Yakama Nation tribal elder Russell (Kiaux) Jim in recognition of his many contributions to the central Washington community as a leader, activist and steward of Native lands.

“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 President Dr. John Bassett. “Heritage is honored to celebrate an individual who has contributed so much to our community.”

“Russell [Kiaux] Jim 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 Davis Washines, Yakama Nation General Council chairman. “Kiaux’s contribution to environmental justice is his legacy. When Kiaux talked, people listened and benefited from what he said.”

The ceremony took place on June 5 at the university’s main campus in Toppenish. A scholarship named in Jim’s honor was formed at the university. To contribute, visit heritage.edu/giving, select “other” for designation and type in “Russell Jim” in the comments section.

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