Juanita Tate was born in Ardmore, Oklahoma, in 1910. Born from Chickasaw parents, her father gave her the name of “Foshi,” which translates to “bird.” She always cherished this name.
She attended the Chilocco Indian School, where she graduated in 1928. She then continued her education at Ardmore Business College and then East Central College in Ada, Oklahoma.
Tate was very involved in Chickasaw tribal affairs. She held positions in the Chickasaw-Choctaw Confederation, as well as the Atoka Treaty Rights Association.
Tate was a very proud Chickasaw, and spent much of her time studying her ancestry and genealogy. She was a great-grandchild of Edmund Pickens, the first elected Chief of the Chickasaw Nation. She wrote a biography of Pickens, “Edmund Pickens (Okchantubby): First Elected Chickasaw Chief, His Life and Times,” and it was published by the Chickasaw Press.
Juanita spent her lifetime devoted to the study and preservation of the heritage and history of Chickasaw tribe. She died in 2012 at the age of 101.