Suzan Shown Harjo
Suzan Shown Harjo (Cheyenne and Hodulgee Muscogee) is a poet, writer, lecturer, curator and policy advocate who has played an instrumental role in the passage of several major acts of federal legislation, from the 1978 American Indian Religious Freedom Act (AIRFA) to the 1990 Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA). She currently serves as President and Executive Director of The Morning Star Institute, a national Native rights organization for cultural advocacy, arts promotion and research.
Harjo is past Executive Director of the National Congress of American Indians (1984-1990). She was the first Native American woman to receive the Montgomery Fellowship from Dartmouth College in 1992, and was the first Vine Deloria, Jr. Distinguished Indigenous Scholar at the University of Arizona in 2008. She served on the Native American Policy Committee of the 2008 U.S. Presidential campaign of Barack Obama and as an advisor to the Obama transition team (2008-2009).