MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Fort Gibson

April 21, 2014

High school freshman establishes ‘Leadership Day’

Holiday set for

daily in October

A Fort Gibson High School freshman has succeeded in establishing a “Cherokee Nation Leadership Day,” according to a media release.

The Cherokee Nation Tribal Council has declared a day each October to recognize some of the most influential people in the tribe.

Cherokee Nation citizen Cierra Fields spearheaded the resolution as an alternative to celebrating Columbus Day.

The day will be dedicated to recognizing current and former Cherokee leaders in the areas of government, education, business, history and cultural preservation who have helped the tribe get to its current state.

“I applaud Cierra for her initiative to replace Columbus Day with a day that all Cherokees can celebrate,” said Tribal Councilor David Walkingstick of District 3, Tahlequah, who sponsored the resolution.

“This is a shining example of how Cherokee youth can make a positive difference in our nation.”

Last month, Fields traveled to New York City for a two-week meeting hosted by the United Nations on the status of women’s rights worldwide.

Fields was not only the youngest delegate, but was the first Native American delegate for SustainUS, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization of young people advancing sustainable development.

Fields also has been to Washington, D.C., several times and to California serving as a Champion for Change for Native American youth.

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