Confronting Racism/Inequity

Do not accept what is; confront it and move toward what should be. This page will present examples of what LWV-TC and other like-minded organizations are doing to move toward a truly diverse and inclusive community.  LWV-TC acknowledges the traditional land that comprises Thurston County today, those of the Nisqually, Chehalis, and Squaxin Island Tribes, and pays respect to tribal elders past and present.




There will be a variety of suggestions, opportunities for participation, and things to read related to Native American Heritage Month posted in this space throughout the month.  You will want to check back often to see what's new.  If you content you think would be a good addition, scroll to the bottom of this page and leave a comment in the POST YOUR COMMENT box.

Vi Hilbert


Vi taRSeblu Hilbert
Photo courtesy of Jill La Pointe

Vi taRSeblu Hilbert (1918-2008) was a member and noted elder of the Upper Skagit tribe.  Her first language was Lushootseed, a Coast Salish language found in the Puget Sound region of western Washington state.  During her long and productive life, Vi Hilbert played a major role in the revitalization of the language and culture of the First People of the Pacific Northwest.  She became known as a teacher, storyteller, publisher, and public speaker.  For over 40 years she built and maintained a research archive of cultural materials.  Working with other scholars, she developed and published teaching materials and volumes of stories through Lushootseed Research, an organization which she founded.  Her commitment to preserving Lushootseed language and literature is largely responsible for the renaissance of interest in Lushootseed culture and the growth of tribal language programs all over western Washington.

Voices of the First People includes a selection of recordings made between 1968 and 2008.  We’ve organized them into 6 categories that highlight aspects of Vi Hilbert’s life and work, focusing on her commitment to the preservation, documentation, and revitalization of Lushootseed language and lifeways.  Click here.


Rena Priest, Washington's first Indigenous poet laureate


Rena Priest is a Poet and an enrolled member of the Lhaq’temish (Lummi) Nation. She has been appointed to serve as the Washington State Poet Laureate for the term of April 2021-2023.  Check out her website here.

Here is some History in the Making

Governor Jay Inslee made a historic appointment of a Tribal Chair to a college board by naming Kristopher Peters, Chair of the Squaxin Island
Tribe, to The Evergreen State College Board of Trustees.
Read the notice from TESC related to this appointment by clicking here.                             

 NASA is taking the opportunity to highlight its indigenous scientists, engineers and more.

NASA's first indigenous trailblazers include Mary G. Ross, a "hidden figure" mathematician and engineer and member of the Cherokee Nation whose cutting edge work including work on NASA's Planetary Flight Handbook and work on early designs for flights to Mars and Venus, and John Bennet Herrington, a NASA astronaut and member of the Chickasaw Nation who, in 2002, became the first member of a Native American tribe to fly to space. 

Today, the agency's Native American employees are reaching for the stars and expanding our understanding of the universe around us through groundbreaking science and innovation. 

Related: NASA and Navajo Nation Partner in Understanding the Universe


Did you know that Maria Tallchief was one of the most accomplished dancers of the twentieth century, and was the first Native American woman to hold the rank of prima
ballerina? Learn more about her in a Nation Women's History Museum online exhibit!

Click Here

Photo credit: Maria Tallchief enpointe (1961) by Chicago Tribune.

Celebrating Native American women in STEM


Do you know about Dr. Susan La Flesche Picotte, the first Native American to earn a medical degree? For National Native American Heritage Month, read about her and more barrier-breaking Native women in our online database of historical figures in STEM. READ MORE


Can't think of a better place to look for books and such on this and a host of other topics.  Celebrate Native American Heritage Month this November by enjoying curated selections found at and browsing the OverDrive collection.

Timberland Regional Library (TRL) recognizes that we operate within the traditional territories of the Coast Salish people and Chinook people who have been the stewards of these lands since time immemorial. TRL provides library services to Indian tribes, extending beyond the geographic limits of Lewis, Mason, Thurston, Pacific, and Grays Harbor Counties. This acknowledgement reminds us to strive for respectful partnerships with all people, as we search for collective healing and learn how to be better stewards of the indigenous lands we inhabit.

Our local PSB station, Channel 9, will be presenting a host of programs honoring Native American History, beginning with: The Rising

Climate change is quickly altering the shape of the Northwest — its ecosystems, coastline and a way of life for several tribes on the Pacific Coast. Facing declining fish stocks and an ocean in revolt, they are now confronting the unthinkable: moving from the place they’ve inhabited since ‘time immemorial,’ or staying behind to weather the storm in the canoes of their ancestors.  Watch now.



New TAM Exhibit: On Native Land

On Native Land: Landscapes from the Haub Family Collection opens November 6.
On Native Land: Landscapes in the Haub Family Collection will feature 14 landscapes paired with land acknowledgments to recognize more than 75 Native American communities whose homelands are pictured in the paintings. View artworks from notable places across the country and explore the cultural history of these special places. 

13th Annual
Native American Art Exhibition

November 8th – December 10th, 2021
Opening reception: Friday, November 12 (6:00 – 7:30 pm)

The Leonor R. Fuller gallery is honored to present a themed exhibition, curated by Philip Red Eagle, which engages viewers and the community celebrating the art and culture of our Native community members. The exhibition will highlight work by Native artists, from local and regional tribes, and Native artists from other locations who now live in the area.

Image text: “Nespelum II, Crazy Horse”, Robert Charloe, digital photograph
Sponsored in part by the Nisqually Indian Tribe

League of Women Voters of Thurston County Book Group

All meeting begin at 2:00 pm and are done  by 4:00 pm.  Additional information about the meetings is detailed on the upcoming events web page..

November 21, 2021, The Sum Of Us: What Racism Costs Everyone And How We Can Prosper Together by Heather McGhee
January 16, 2022, Murder At The Mission: A Frontier Killing, Its Legacy of Lies, And the taking of the American West by Blain Harden

April 28, 2021

Bibliography for the “Let’s Talk About Race” Book Group

Members of the book group want to explore intersectionality of race, ablism, disability rights, and trans and gay issues. There are also resources about implicit bias. and race, economics, and politics.

Fiction About Race In America:

There, There by Tommy Orange

A Dream Called Home by Reyna Grande

An American Marriage by Tayari Jones

Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer


Books About Ableism and Disability Rights

Disability Visibility: First Person Stories From The Twenty-First Century

by Alice Wong

Being Heumann: An Unrepentant Memoir By A Disability Rights Activist

by Judith Heumann


Books About LGBTQ Issues:

For Colored Boys Who Have Considered Suicide When The Rainbow Is Still Not Enough: Coming of Age, Coming Out, Coming Home by Keith Boykin

Stonewall Reader paperback by New York Public Library (editor)


Books About Implicit Bias:

Caste: The Origins Of Our Discontents by Isabel Wilkerson

So You Want To Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo

Blindspot: Hidden Biases Of Good People by Mahzarin Banji

and Anthony Greenwald


Books About Race, Economics, and Politics

What You Are Getting Wrong About Appalachia by Elizabeth Catte

Principles of a Pluralist Commonwealth by Gar Alperovitz

Evicted by Matthew Desmond

Imperfect Union by Steven Inskeep

Color Of Compromise by Jemar Tisby

This article with references focuses on the invisibility of black writers in Applachia.

The authors coined a term to describe them--”Affrilachia”.

This article with provides useful insight on the topic of reparations.






April 13, 2021

Recently the LWVUS passed a new national by-law that marked a new era in the League’s approach to racial issues. From now on, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion is on equal footing with non-partisanship as a value in the League of Women Voters. In that effort, Virginia Kase, CEO of the National League wrote to Senator Cory Booker of (D NJ) and Representative Barbara Lee (D CA) to express our support of a new Commission.

League Endorses Creation of U.S. Commission on Truth, Racial Healing, and Transformation


LWVUS 2020 Convention also adopted the following resolution

We Resolve First, That the League advocates against systemic racism in the justice system and, at a minimum, for preventing excessive force and brutality by law enforcement. We also call for prompt actions by all League members to advocate within every level of government to eradicate systemic racism, and the harm that it causes;  

We Resolve Second, That the League help our elected officials and all Americans recognize these truths to be self-evident; that Black, Indigenous and all people of color (BIPOC) deserve equal protection under the law; and that we demand solutions for the terrible wrongs done, so that regardless of race, ethnicity, religion, disability, and gender identity or sexual orientation we may truly become a nation "indivisible, with liberty and justice for all".


Showing 3 reactions

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  • R Peggy Smith
    commented 2021-11-01 14:00:36 -0700
  • Carol Goss
    commented 2021-05-06 18:45:25 -0700
    Thanks so much for this great page of content, resources and book lists. It spans a wide breadth of meaningful information and provides the LWV’s policies. Especially appreciate the Spanish translation of the LWVWA DEI policy! GREAT WORK!!
  • followed this page 2020-11-25 13:40:40 -0800