Shade honored as Cherokee National Treasure
Loretta Shade holds her framed Cherokee National Treasure declaration for 2018. Because of illness she was unable to receive her honor in person until July 15, 2019 during the Tribal Council meeting. Left is Deputy Chief S. Joe Crittenden, and right is Principal Chief Bill John Baker. COURTESY
TAHLEQUAH – The Tribal Council, Principal Chief Bill John Baker and Deputy Chief S. Joe Crittenden honored Loretta Shade, of Hulbert, as a Cherokee National Treasure during the July 15 Tribal Council meeting.
Shade is the widow of former Deputy Chief Hastings Shade. In 2018, she was selected as a Cherokee National Treasure for her contributions to preserving the Cherokee language, but because of illness, she was unable to receive the honor in person at that time.
“It is such an honor to recognize Loretta, a first-language Cherokee speaker, for dedicating much of her life to teaching and sharing our language and culture,” Deputy Speaker Victoria Vazquez said. “Loretta is the epitome of a Cherokee National Treasure, having spent 20 years teaching Cherokee reading and writing courses at Northeastern State University and teaching many other Cherokee language courses throughout the tribe.”
Cherokee National Treasure is an honor given by the tribe to individuals who are keeping Cherokee art, language and culture alive.