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NACC-AIANNHP Center Timeline

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  • Students prepare a needs assessment for Stanford Administration.  Addressing the needs of isolation and culture shock of Native Americans at Stanford, the document advocates for a community center, theme residence, Native American Studies, retention services, and increased recruitment of students, staff, and faculty.
  • Stanford conducts its own Native American needs assessment.  The new report's author, John Black, finds the Native American students to be more “needy” than the students’ report had estimated.


  • External funding is received for Native American programming, staffing, and facilities from Educational Foundation of America
  • “Tecumseh House” on Alvarado Row is SAIO's first headquarters.  As a hub of activity for indigenous population on campus, this student space will pave the way for one of the ethnic community centers of the future—the Native American Cultural Center at Stanford.  
  • Externally funded student interns, “Tecumseh Fellows” hired as peer counselors, program planners, financial aid and career advisors, newsletter writers, etc.
  • First graduate student interns (Chris McNeil) hired as recruiter and counselor (Chris Peters) for Native American undergraduate students.
  • First Assistant Dean of Students (Gwen Shunatona) hired—with University funds—as advocate for Native American undergraduate students.
  • Firetruck house is the site of SAIO's second headquarters after Tecumseh House is demolished to make way for the Law School.


  • Native American Cultural Center opens at Clubhouse on February 22.  Larry Rodgers paints mural over the fireplace that later becomes SAIO's logo.


  • First graduate student intern (Hartman Lomawaima) hired as advocate for Native American graduate students.


  • Second Assistant Dean of Students (Larry Gorospe) is hired as advocate for Native     American undergraduate students.  After Gorospe leaves Stanford, the advocacy of Native Students is provided through a series of interiim appointments including Patricia Fresh, Wayne Johnson, and Frank Redner.
  • The Native American Cultural Center is renovated through a grant from the Sears Foundation.  A 10 piece modular couch, a conference table, and woven-wood window shades are purchased to spruce up the place.


  • American Indian Movement co-founder, Dennis Banks teaches a SWOPSI (Stanford Workshop on Social and Political Issues) course on American Indian Activism.


  • SAIO sponsors class—“Federal Indian Law: A Survey and Analysis” taught by attorney and activist Dick Trudell and Professor Robert North.


  • George Clever hired as Assistant Dean of Students—50% Native American Advisor and 50% Counseling Dean (a forerunner to future Residence Dean positions).
  • Seven new Native American undergraduates enroll at Stanford.  In lieu of a Native American recruiter within Undergraduate Admissions, the Assistant Dean of Students is invited to read applicant files and make recommendations.
  • First Assistant Dean of Graduate Studies (Anne Medicine) hired as recruiter and advocate Native American graduate students.
  • A Native American Cultural Week, sponsored by Anne Medicine and Graduate Studies is held during the week preceding the Stanford Powwow.
  • “Stanford at Zuni” becomes an off campus academic option (similar to Overseas Studies programs.)


  • Undergraduate Tony Kahn creates a mural for the Native American Cultural center using a traditional Navajo style of painting.


  • 68 Native Americans are counted among the students at Stanford.


  • Jim Larimore hired as Assistant Dean/Director of the American Indian Program. (Responsibilities expand further to 150% effort—50% Native American Advisor, 50% Residence Dean, and 50% oversight of Native American Cultural Center.)
  • A Lakota language class is taught by Calvin Fast Wolf at the Native American Cultural Center.  Other languages, including Cherokee, Navajo and Potawatomi, had been initiated over the years by Native American students.


  • The Native American Cultural Center is refurnished with new carpet, a new 10 piece modular couch, and new conference chairs.
  • Past Stanford Powwow posters are collected and framed—as are photographs of many Native American students and alumni— to give the NACC a sense of history and family!


  • American Indian Program staff (Jim Larimore, Denni Woodward, and Connie Byrd) share office space with the Asian American Activities Center staff (Julian Low and Elsa Tsutsaoka) upstairs in the Clubhouse #13!
  • The American Indian Summer Immersion Program, a transition program for admitted Native American Stanford frosh, is funded by the Irvine Foundation.
  • The American Indian Staff Forum is created to create a collective voice for the Native staff and faculty of Stanford University, Hospital, and the Linear Accelerator Center.
  • Native Hawaiian students advocate for inclusion in the Native American ethnic category to increase recruitment, provide support services, etc.


  • Following the UCMI Interim Report, the Ethnic Center Directors' positions are increased from 50% to full time.
  • Mabel Pike, Tlingit artist, storyteller, and elder, makes her first annual visit to Stanford as a Visiting Artist in Residence.  She returns to Stanford for the next ten years.


  • The first Native American recruiter (Nicole Burrell) is hired by Undergraduate Admissions.  Keith Light , Chris Poncé and Vince Cuseo, although non-Native, had focused on the recruitment of Native Americans in the past.
  • The first Native American studies professor (Robert Warrior) is hired.  In addition to teaching courses within the English Department, Professor Warrior is required to teach Native American studies classes.


  • The American Indian and Alaska Native Program (AIANP) office staff—Jim Larimore, Denni Woodward and Beverly Corriere—moves out of the space shared with the Asian American Activities Center downstairs to space adjoining the Native American Cultural Center after the long time occupants Volunteers In Asia program move to the Haas Center for Public Service
  • The Native American Resource Center opens and is furnished through a monetary gift from Gordon Russell.  The Resource Center houses study room facilities, meeting space, and an extensive library of Native American books, tapes, and videos.
  • In the spirit of downsizing and budget cutting, it is suggested that the American Indian and Alaska Native program merge with the Asian American Activities Center—thereby eliminating the need for, and the cost of, separate directors.  Students of color unite and host a public forum to demonstrate the continuing need (dating from the 1970s) for specialized services for their distinct communities.


  • Following the forum presented by the students of color, and an extensive report prepared by the four ethnic community centers, the University President and Provost allocate funding ($25,000 each for a fixed term of two years) for academic, cultural programming, and graduate student programming.
  • The first American Indian Research Forum is co-sponsored by the AIANP and the Stanford Native American Graduate Students.  The Forum provides an opportunity for both undergrads and grads from Stanford and other colleges and universities to discuss new currents in Native American scholarship across disciplines.
  • The John Milton Oskison Writing Competition (named for the first Native American Stanford graduate) begins and offers prizes to 2 undergraduate and 2 graduate students.
  • Benny Shendo hired as Assistant Dean and Director of the American Indian and Alaska Native Program.


  • Native Hawaiian students are included within the Native American Community at Stanford. The Native American Cultural Center now serves all American Indians, Alaska Natives and Hawaiian Natives at Stanford.


  • After nearly thirty years of contstant advocacy at Stanford, Native American Studies is born as part of the Center for Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity.
  • AIANNHP takes interim responsibility for Native American graduate recruitment following Anne Medicine's retirement.
  • The American Indian Staff Forum launches the Pam Hanitchak Lecture Series (named for AISF's founder).


  • Winona Simms hired as Assistant Dean and Director of the American Indian, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian Program/Native American Cultural Center.
  • Jarrid Whitney is hired by Undergraduate Admissions as the Native American recruiter.


  • Greg Graves is hired at the Native American Graduate Student Recruiter and Retention Coordinator.