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Many Thanks to Our Native Advisors and Contributors

In 2003, the National Library of Medicine (NLM) undertook a new strategy to enhance our outreach programs for the Native American community. Our closest advisors urged us to consider convening a series of traditional Listening Circles wherein tribal leaders and elders could meet with NLM officials in their home settings, to discuss their needs for access to health information resources and what support NLM might be able to provide. Listening Circles were convened in North Dakota, Alaska, and Hawai‘i, and included site visits to educational and cultural venues that enabled the NLM team led by the NLM Director Emeritus, Donald A.B. Lindberg, M.D., to appreciate first-hand the historical and contemporary influences on Native Americans’ concepts of health and illness. It was in Hawai‘i that our hosts opened our minds to the intriguing possibility of developing an NLM exhibition that would tell these stories in Native Voices. Over a period of several years, additional consultations and visitations to reservations, remote villages, and urban health facilities in the Lower 48 states, Alaska, and Hawai‘i explored prospective topics, issues and themes that ultimately led to the contents of the exhibition you are experiencing today. NLM is enormously grateful to the following persons who contributed generously of their time and unique insights, and without whose facilitation this exhibition would not be possible.


  • Kalani Brady, M.D., Medical Director, Kalaupapa Health Clinic, Molokai, HI, and Associate Professor, John A. Burns School of Medicine, University of Hawai‘i, Honolulu, HI
  • Darlene Butts, Director, Ke Ali‘i Maka‘ainana Hawaiian Civic Club of Washington, D.C., Stafford, VA
  • Kauila Clark, Traditional Healer and Second Vice President of the Board, Waianae Coast Comprehensive Health Center, O‘ahu, HI
  • Aunty Agnes Cope, Traditional Healer and Elder, Waianae Coast Comprehensive Health Center, O‘ahu, HI
  • Jay Dowsett, Hōkūle‘a Model Canoe Co-Builder, Honolulu, HI
  • Betty Lou Kam, Vice President, Cultural Resources, Bishop Museum, Honolulu, HI
  • Kamaki Kanahele, Traditional Healer and Director, Traditional Healing Center, Waianae Coast Comprehensive Health Center, O‘ahu, HI
  • Marjorie Mau, M.D., Professor, Department of Native Hawaiian Health, John A. Burns School of Medicine, University of Hawai‘i, Honolulu, HI
  • Tay Perry, Hōkūle‘a Model Canoe Co-Builder, Honolulu, HI
  • Hardy Spoehr, Executive Director, Papa Ola Lokahi, Honolulu, HI
  • Nainoa Thompson, Chair, Polynesian Voyaging Society, Honolulu, HI
  • Benjamin Young, M.D., Professor Emeritus, Native Hawaiian Center of Excellence, John A. Burns School of Medicine, University of Hawai‘i, Honolulu, HI


  • Maynard Eakan, Alaska Native Elder and Healer, Kotzebue, AK
  • Robert Fortuine, M.D., USPHS (Ret.), formerly, PHS Alaska Medical Officer, Family Physician, Alaska Native Medical Center, Historian, and Author
  • Katherine Gottlieb, President and Chief Executive Officer, Southcentral Foundation, Anchorage, AK
  • Ted Mala, M.D., Director of Tribal Relations, Southcentral Foundation, Director of Traditional Healing, Alaska Native Medical Center, Anchorage, AK
  • Father Michael Oleksa, Ph.D., Russian Orthodox Priest, Anchorage, AK
  • Jonathon Ross, President and Chief Executive Officer, Alaska Native Heritage Center, Anchorage, AK

Lower 48 States

  • Thomas Begay, Navajo Indian Code Talker, Gallup, NM
  • Holly Buchanan, Ph.D., Executive Director, Health Sciences Library and Information Center, University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center, Albuquerque, NM
  • Ralph Forquera, Executive Director, Seattle Indian Health Board, Seattle, WA
  • Tex Hall, Chairman, Tribal Council, Mandan-Hidatsa-Arikara Nation, New Town, ND
  • Jeffrey Henderson, M.D., President and Chief Executive Officer, Black Hills Center for American Indian Health, Rapid City, SD
  • Jewell James, House of Tears Carvers, Lummi Nation, Bellingham, WA
  • Pamela Iron, Executive Director, National Indian Women’s Health Resource Center, Tahlequah, OK
  • Cynthia Lindquist, Ph.D., President, Cankdeska Cikana Community College, Spirit Lake Dakota Nation, Fort Totten, ND
  • Paul Ortega, Mescalero Apache Medicine Man, Mescalero, NM
  • Helen Scheirbeck, Ed.D., deceased, formerly Assistant Director for Public Programs, Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of the American Indian, Washington, DC
  • Clifford Trafzer, Ph.D., Professor of History, University of California at Riverside, Riverside, CA
  • Martin Waukezoo, Chief Executive Officer, Native American Health Center, Oakland, CA
  • Kenneth York, Ph.D., Director of Development, Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians, Choctaw, MS

Please see the overall exhibition credits page for the complete list of names of Native Americans and others who assisted or contributed to the exhibition development.