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NIH Marks American Indian, Alaska Native Heritage Month with Two Ceremonies

NIH will mark November as American Indian and Alaska Native Heritage Month with two events. The fourth annual NIH American Indian and Alaska Native Heritage Month program begins on Tuesday, Nov. 16, when the Red Crooked Sky Dance Troupe will perform a cultural presentation, 11:30 a.m. -1 p.m., in the Natcher Conference Center's main auditorium. Red Crooked Sky is a collaborative mix of American Indians educating and promoting positive cultural awareness through traditional and contemporary dance. The troupe represents an array of tribes — Cherokee, Saponi, Sioux, Seneca, Monacan, Osage and Pamunkey. A reception follows. The event is organized by the NIH American Indian Alaska Native Employee Council and sponsored by the NIH Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity Management.

Then, on Thursday, Nov. 18 from 1 to 2:30 p.m. in Lipsett Amphitheater, Bldg. 10, the observance continues with Dr. Lori Arviso Alvord, author of The Scalpel and the Silver Bear and an associate dean of student and multicultural affairs at Dartmouth Medical School. A member of the Navajo tribe, she is also an assistant professor of surgery, assistant professor of psychiatry and is a board-certified practicing general surgeon. Alvord's talks describe "Walking in Beauty, Living in Balance — A Navajo Philosophy of Healing," and the important role of ceremonies. She will discuss how she has incorporated this wisdom into her surgical practice to create better healing environments and how listeners can apply the principles of "walking in beauty" to their own lives. Organized by AIANEC, the lecture is sponsored by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine and OEODM.

All are invited. Sign language interpreters will be provided. Individuals with disabilities who need reasonable accommodation to participate should contact Michael Chew, (301) 402-3681 (v) or (301) 496-9755 (TTY) or by Federal Relay Service 1-800-877-8339 (TTY). For more information on these activities, call Rebecca Tudisco at (301) 496-3482 or visit

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