Elders Speak Premiere

Sharing Oral Histories

We honor our elders for their knowledge, wisdom, history and experience. In an intimate fireside setting, hear their priceless stories. Pauline Brown shares her experience growing up in Oklahoma during the Great Depression, Larry Hawkins tells of the school-aged prejudice he endured as a half-white, half-Chickasaw student and Luther John explains why he's a firm believer in preserving the Chickasaw language. Four other revered elders share personal anecdotes of triumphs, hardships and their treasured Chickasaw heritage.

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Profiles

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Lisa Billy

An unprecedented career in the Oklahoma House of Representatives
A former small business owner and educator, Rep. Lisa Billy, a decorated Chickasaw, now serves in the Oklahoma House of Representatives.

Pauline Carpenter Brown

Fluent speaker of the Chickasaw language and notable historian of the Chickasaw culture
Brown grew up in the Goodland Indian Orphanage but did not let this deter her from growing up to be a fluent speaker of the Chickasaw language.

Linda Briggs

A dedicated public servant to her hometown, state and the Chickasaw people
Linda has served as the Pickens District Representative to the Chickasaw Tribal Legislature from 1994 to 2000, and then from 2001 to the present.

Rose Shields-Jefferson

Treasured elder and preserver of the Chickasaw language
Rose Shields-Jefferson was born in 1944 in Talihina, Oklahoma, and is the oldest of 13 children.