Five Lumbee Tribal Council members were among the state’s American Indian leadership who attended the Governor’s official signing proclaiming November as American Indian Heritage Month.
The event was held at the Governor’s Executive Mansion in Raleigh on Friday, November 6.
In attendance were Tribal Speaker Lesaundri Hunt and Council members Jan Lowery, Jarrod Lowery, Homer Fields and Janie McFarland.
This year’s theme is Preserving, Living, and Sharing our Proud American Indian Heritage.
"I stand proud today with American Indian leaders from across the entire state and proclaim November American Indian Heritage Month in North Carolina," Governor Pat McCrory said. "I invite all North Carolinians to take the time to honor and observe our rich American Indian culture this month."
November marks a time to reflect on American Indian tribes and their significance in American history and their contributions to American culture.
“The Lumbee Tribe is the largest of the eight Indian tribes that call North Carolina home,” said Paul Brooks, chairman of the Lumbee Tribe. “This is the time of the year when we can showcase our heritage and culture through programs, celebrations and activities,” Brooks said.
“For centuries, Lumbee tribal members have been significant contributions to this country. It is important for our children to be exposed to this achievements so they can be inspired to break down barriers in today’s society.”
Former President George Bust first proclaimed American Indian Heritage Month in 1990. North Carolina is home to more than 122,000 American Indians, according to recent data compiled by the U.S. Census. The Lumbee Tribe, which boasts 65,000 members, makes up more than half of the total Indian population. North Carolina has the largest Indian population east the Mississippi River and the eighth largest American Indian population in the United States.
“We encourage individuals of all races to take time to attend these special celebrations and programs during the month of November in honor of the state’s first people,” Chairman Brooks said.