WASHINGTON Wednesday, President Barack Obama named 21
recipients of the Presidential Medal of Freedom and Eloise Cobell,
Blackfeet, was named (posthumous) among them.
was a tribal community leader and advocate for Native American self-determination
and financial independence. She used her expertise in accounting
to champion a lawsuit that resulted in a historic settlement, restoring
tribal homelands to her beloved Blackfeet Nation and many other
tribes, and in so doing, inspired a new generation of Native Americans
to fight for the rights of others. Cobell helped found the Native
American Bank, served as director of the Native American Community
Development Corporation, and inspired Native American women to seek
leadership roles in their communities.
"The Presidential Medal of Freedom is not just our nation's
highest civilian honor - it's a tribute to the idea that all of
us, no matter where we come from, have the opportunity to change
this country for the better. From scientists, philanthropists, and
public servants to activists, athletes, and artists, these 21 individuals
have helped push America forward, inspiring millions of people around
the world along the way," Obama said.
The Presidential Medal of Freedom is presented to individuals
who have made especially meritorious contributions to the security
or national interests of the United States, to world peace, or to
cultural or other significant public or private endeavors. The awards
will be presented at the White House on November 22th.