Cultural Atlas – Circle Three

Meet Our Circle 3 Legacy Leaders and Future Legacy Leaders!

These remarkable women leaders will participate in a sisterhood program that will strengthen their relationship over the trajectory of their lives and is designed to support the sharing of cultural knowledge between Indigenous women elders and younger Indigenous women. 

Together, they will work on self-determined cultural leadership priorities in their communities, ranging from: intergenerational knowledge transfer; healing & wellness; solutions to contemporary challenges; Indigenous women’s roles and leadership; homeland recovery; language & ceremony renewal; Indigeous food sovereignty; sky world knowledge.

Get to know them and walk with us this year, as we present their stories and share their lessons. 

Portrait of Pauline Waterfall looking over her right shoulder

Pauline Waterfall


“I am in the last trimester of life and have been blessed to have been given so much Heiltsuk knowledge to guard, keep safe, and pass on.”

Portrait of Kylie Gladstone in Maroon shirt

Kylie Gladstone


“I will document what my grandmother teaches me so that I can support her in writing a Heiltsuk culture and history book to ensure that our knowledge isn’t lost.”

Portrait of Mary Mabel Joseph in stripped collared shirt

Mary Mabel Joseph


“I’ve organized my house group to strengthen Cas yikh and supported other members to step into Chief names.”

Portrait of Molly Ann Wickham wearing a grey jacket with a feather

Molly Ann Wickham


“I believe that bringing our laws and governance into practice in a modern context shows younger people that our laws, language, lands, and culture are relevant to the lives of young women.”

Portrait of Norma Rendon wearing a black hat and green shaded shirt

Norma Rendon

Oglala Lakota

“If you live by the Pipe or your cultural ways you will naturally walk in a gentle manner, without anger and always have compassion for the People, helping the People.”

Portrait of Jessie Rencountre wearing a hat

Jessie Taken Alive-Rencountre

Hunkpapa Lakota

“The ceremonies, medicinal plants, traditional foods, and sacred areas can help bring healing to our minds, bodies, and spirits”

Image of Mililani Trash and  Lihau Rosehill

Mililani Trask

Native Hawaiian

“My life work is best understood as a commitment I undertook in law school, to establish and protect Hawaiian Human Rights so that we, as a People, would not pass.”

Lihau Enriquez Rosehill

Native Hawaiian

“My priorities and life work is preserving traditional practices, protecting sacred areas, and passing on the knowledge that I carry to our younger generation.”

Portrait of Lorna Williams in blue shirt

Lorna Williams

Lil’wat Nation

“My life’s work has been to restore, protect, celebrate, hold precious my Lil’wat heritage – language, understandings, stories, songs, knowledge, relationships and to pass them on to the next generation, and to help others do the same.”

Portrait of Chuutsqa in black shirt

chuutsqa L. Rorick


“All those who are learning to speak our languages, therefore, need to speak often, and speak our language everywhere to heal and restore the hope and confidence we feel when our languages are living. “

Portrait of Serena Francis in black and red shirt

Serena Francis


“Some of our stories were intended to entertain, others to teach, but all our stories contain important aspect of Mi’kmaq ways of being, knowing, and doing.”

Portrait of Susan Bernard in white shirt in front of water

Susan Bernard


“I am working on research for Mi’kmaq star stories to help create a Mi’kmaq star map.”

Portrait of Olive Elm in purple shirt with flowers

Olive Elm

Oneida Nation of the Thames

“Even though I was punished in school for speaking the language—I was made to scrub the floor when they heard me speaking my language—I never gave it up.”

Portrait of Erica Elijah in black jean jacket

Erica Elijah

Oneida Nation of the Thames

“I know how our language and ways awaken the spirit and reignite purpose and truth.”

Portrait of Abby Abinanti

Abby Abinanti


“I’ve tried to take responsibility like our ancestors would want us to, to try to be a member of this community.”

Portrait of Blythe George in front of purple flowers

Blythe George


“I have spent years honing my craft as an empirical scholar, but these credentials are secondary to what I know in my heart as an indigenous woman.”

Portrait of Jessica Carter in beige shirt

Jessica Carter


“My parents instilled a deep commitment for service to our community, and this is the grounding foundation for my work as a Court Director.”

Portrait of Levina Wilkins and Leslie Swan together

Levina Wilkins

Yakama Nation

“To speak the language is: to love yourself; to acknowledge who you are; and to be able to carry on in a good way.”

Leslie Swan

Yakama Nation

“I want to help our people heal from colonization so that future generations will live healthy lifestyles for years to come.”

Portrait of Virginia Gregoire in front of wooden house

Virginia Gregoire


“I have been fortunate to be able to work with the little ones six months to six years old, from 1998, sharing and teaching the language.”

Portrait of Ashley Gregoire in white shirt

Ashley Gregoire


“I was lost and did not know or love who I was until I embraced my language.”