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Wisconsin Historical Society Announces Speakers for 2024 Ojibwe Storytelling Series

Wisconsin Historical Society Announces Speakers for 2024 Ojibwe Storytelling Series

The four-part virtual series, returning for its third annual season this year, debuts on January 9

MADISON, Wis., Jan. 4, 2024 Back for another season featuring a fresh lineup of inspiring guest speakers, the Wisconsin Historical Society is excited to announce the annual Ojibwe Storytelling Series will return this January. The annual series is a popular, four-part virtual event celebrating winter storytelling season by showcasing the voices and intriguing narratives of Ojibwe storytellers.

"Storytelling is one way that wisdom and knowledge is passed from one generation to the next. It's an important aspect of our Ojibwe culture. This series is an opportunity to share that type of experience with a broader audience," said Liz Arbuckle, northern outreach coordinator for the Wisconsin Historical Society.

"Storytelling is one way that wisdom and knowledge is passed from one generation to the next. It's an important aspect of our Ojibwe culture. This series is an opportunity to share that type of experience with a broader audience."

The 2024 series features four Ojibwe women and will take place every Tuesday evening at 7 p.m. CST from Jan. 9-30, 2024. Registration is free and open to the public. Click here for more information and to register.

An enrolled member of the Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwe, Sirella Ford is from the Wolf Clan and is called Asiniwaabikwe. She is a graduate of Northland College. Early in her career, she worked for the Great Lakes Indian Fish & Wildlife Commission and has worked most recently in education, sharing her love of Ojibwe culture with her students. She is known for her beautiful beadwork and famous frybread. Sirella was raised in a powwow family, traveling the contest and traditional powwow circuit all over the Midwest and beyond. She was a fancy shawl dancer in her youth and transitioned to a jingle dress dancer in her teen years. The family powwow tradition continued when she became a mom and brought her two children on the trail. Now, she has four grandchildren whom she loves spending time with and speaking Ojibwe together.

Tina Van Zile is an enrolled member of the Sokaogon, Mole Lake Band of the Lake Superior Chippewa Indians and a descendent of the Forest County Potawatomi. She is the environmental director for the Sokaogon and has been with the department since 1994. Tina is passionate about natural resources, using an approach that respects and acknowledges her ancestors' sacrifices and hopes while working to preserve resources for future generations. Tina believes we must speak for—and act on behalf of—those who cannot speak for themselves, like water, trees, plants and animals. She enjoys educating people about traditional wild rice processing, rice chiefs, and the cultural significance of wild rice for Ojibwe. Tina is president of the Wisconsin Tribal Conservation Advisory Council and a former board member for River Alliance of Wisconsin.

Tinker Schuman is a published poet, storyteller, pipe carrier, artist, tribal elder, and spiritual helper. She is called Migizikwe, Eagle Woman. Tinker is the author of "Baa Bii Dwe We Win: Sounds of Living, Reborn in the Sun" and co-author of "The Healing Blanket." Tinker attended the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe and has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Education. She has been a member of Ancestral Women, a performance group, and is featured in "Women and Water: Woven Portraits from Around the World," a fiber arts exhibit by Mary Burns. Tinker is an enrolled member of the Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians and has two children, seven grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren.

Liz Arbuckle is a member of the Bad River Chippewa in northern Wisconsin, where she currently resides. She is a senior councilwoman on the Bad River Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Tribal Council. She has a bachelor's degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a Ph.D. in political science from the University of Michigan. Her areas of expertise are Native American culture and history and ethnic group identity. She is the northern outreach coordinator for the Wisconsin Historical Society. Liz is the founder and leader of Bad River's 4-H club, Rezberries. She is the proud mom of two beautiful, brilliant daughters, Bella and Viddy.

About the Wisconsin Historical Society:
The Wisconsin Historical Society, founded in 1846, ranks as one of the largest, most active and most diversified state historical societies in the nation. As both a state agency and a private membership organization, its mission is to help people connect to the past by collecting, preserving and sharing stories. The Wisconsin Historical Society serves millions of people every year through a wide range of sites, programs and services. For more information, visit wisconsinhistory.org.