Museum to honor the least known people in North America,
the Original Tribal Women
Anne Lanell Hancock
1914 - 2004
First full blood Assiniboine from the Fort Peck Indian Reservation to become a registered nurse
Anne was born on December 17, 1914 two miles east of Wolf Point, Montana in her grandparents log house. Anne's mother passed away when she was four months old so she was raised by her father (Appears in the Day) Tom Hancock. Her grandmothers Medicine Cloud and Shooter also helped to raise her. Assiniboine was her first language till the age of three, when she began to learn her second language, English.
Anne graduated from Wolf Point High School in 1932 with honors and received two scholarships: she chose the Colonial Dames of America scholarship. She began college at UCLA and later transferred to Philadelphia's William Penn School of Nursing. The college sent Anne on an internship to Sacramento, CA, then to Winslow, AZ and finally to Pawnee, OK to gain experience. She returned to Philadelphia and received her diploma for nursing, thus in 1936 Anne Wiya Najin was the first full blood Assiniboine from the Fort Peck Indian Reservation to become a registered nurse.
She returned to Pennsylvania where she worked as a visiting home nurse in the Philadelphia area for ten years, working in all aspects of the field with all races. She also worked with other hospitals in northern and southern Pennsylvania. She finished her tenure as charge nurse of the fifteen-story Pennsylvania hospital, which is the second oldest hospital in America, working the evening shift. After working in Philadelphia for 20 years she proudly returned home to the Fort Peck Reservation.
In 1966 she was recruited to run the then called heath and home aide management program for the Tribes, which later evolved into the Community Health Representative (CHR) Program. After 22 years of working at home for the Fort Peck Tribes and caring for many, of her tribal members, Anne retired.
Standing Woman lived a very productive and active life with her culture, family, and community. Anne enjoyed people and shared her adventures and compassion with the community. Anne' was proud of her family and the family loved their grandmother. She was fluent in her native Assiniboine language and culture. She spent her remaining years reminiscing of time past, relaxing, doing crossword puzzles, spending time with her great grandchildren, driving around and working outdoors. She also enjoyed company, visiting and telling stories of her life ventures, the old days growing up and of course her journey off the reservation competing in the non-Indian world and being successful at it.
In 2002 a special honoring was performed for Anne Standing Woman Hancock, the article below describes it
"Voice quivering with emotion Saturday night, Fort Peck tribal member John Pipe thanked the woman who saved his life when he was 6 years old - Anne Standing Woman Hancock.
"She was the one who discovered I had diabetes," Pipe said. "She was the one who gave me the insulin shots. It's because of her that I am here tonight to honor her as a tribal council member."
Hancock, an 87-year-old Assiniboine, was one of seven Native American women recognized for their contributions to their tribes at the Good Woman Comes Out program, presented by the Pretty Shield Foundation Saturday night at the Sheraton Billings Hotel.
Each honoree was selected by tribal leaders at each of the seven Indian reservations in Montana. The women were each presented with plaques and given checks for $350. Bill Snell Jr., who is the great grandson of Pretty Shield, organized and sponsored the evening with his mother, Alma Snell, to celebrate the contributions that Indian women have made.
"It's fitting to have this dinner in this room overlooking Sacrifice Cliffs," Bill Snell said. "A lot of women have given their lives so that others will have a better life."
Hancock is thought to be the first Assiniboine woman to graduate from Wolf Point High School when she graduated with honors in 1932. She went on to become the first full-blooded Assiniboine from the Fort Peck Indian Reservation to become a registered nurse and spent 20 years working in Pennsylvania hospitals before returning to her reservation to organize and run the Community Health Representatives program.
"I think it's important to honor these people while they are still alive," Hancock's nephew, Rusty Stafne, said. "She worked hard for a lot of years, taking care of everybody on the reservation."
Other Native American women honored included:
Northern Cheyenne tribal leader Geri Small introduced her older sister, Wanda Martinez, who served as a role model to her. Martinez was recognized Saturday night for serving her tribe and in Native Action for 25 years. Martinez helped get Native Americans registered and out to vote and was recognized in 1993 by President Clinton for her work in Native Action. "Through Wanda's work, Indian people have been able to fulfill the promise made to all Americans of having their votes count and their voices heard at all levels of government," her nomination letter read.
Randeen Fitzpatrick, who is a member of the Crow Tribe, was recognized for helping low income families find housing and for supporting people who needs help in a crisis situation. Fitzpatrick is a social service representative for the BIA Social Services in Crow Agency. She is well-known in her tribe for valuing open-mindedness, tolerance, acceptance and understanding. "Randeen is a strong believer in integrating traditional Indian spiritual beliefs with the current situation to help strengthen her family and community members," her nomination letter read.
Joyce Castillo, of Harlem, was recognized for her service to the her community and her dedication to the elders of the Fort Belknap Indian Reservation.
Marilyn Parsons, a member of the Blackfeet Tribe, was recognized for her extensive service to the tribe as director of Natural Resources - Oil and Gas Development.
Teresa Wall-McDonald, a member of the Salish Kootenai Tribes, was honored for writing and obtaining grants to benefit low-income families, including a $1.6 million grant for disaster employment and a $1.3 million grant for retraining dislocated woods workers.
Mary Lodge Pole, an 81-year-old member of the Chippewa Cree Tribe on the Rocky Boy Reservation, was honored as a tribal elder who continues to practice her traditional and cultural way of life.
The women selected for recognition Saturday have served as quiet role models for their tribes. Keynote speaker Henrietta Mann, a professor of Native American Studies at Montana State University, acknowledged all seven honorees as being service and sacrifice oriented.
"You make the sacrifices for your children and your culture," Mann said. "You are the ones who have quiet, supportive roles and who work behind the scenes. It takes courageous women to do what you do."
Anne Hancock passed away January 2, 2004, in Billings MT.
To honor Anne Hancock we would like to include on her page information about the National Alaska Native American Indian Nurses Association (NANAINA)
The National Alaska Native American Indian Nurses Association
The National Alaska Native American Indian Nurses Association (NANAINA) is founded upon its predecessor organization, the American Indian Nurses Association and later, the American Indian Alaska Native Nurses Association.
The predecessor organization disbanded in 1984 with approximately 2000 members. Since that time, small chapters and groups of American Indian and Alaska Native nurses have:
- Continued to support Alaska Native and American Indian students, nurses and allied health professionals through the development of leadership skills and continuing education;
- Continued to advocate for the improvement of health care provided to American Indian and Alaska Native consumers;
- Worked at increasing culturally competent health care provided to Alaska Native and American Indian consumers.
- NANAINA strives to serve the professional needs of Alaska Native and American Indian nurses.
- NANAINA strives to serve the professional needs of Alaska Native and American Indian consumers.
- NANAINA is committed to working toward the improvement of the quality of health care for Alaska Native and American Indian consumers.
- NANAINA is committed to working toward the improvement of the quality of nursing care provided to Alaska Native and American Indian consumers.
- NANAINA is committed to working toward enhancing equal access to educational, professional and economic opportunities for Alaska Native and American Indian nurses.
- To promote a continuum of health among Alaska Native and American Indian people.
- To serve the professional needs of Alaska Native and American Indian nurses.
- To cooperate with other professional associations, health care organizations and governmental entities in matters affecting the purposes of NANAINA.
- To recommend culturally appropriate health service delivery solutions where barriers to Alaska Native and American Indian consumers exist.
- To recommend culturally appropriate education solutions to local, state and federal agencies for Alaska Native and American Indian nurses and nursing students where barriers exist.
- To identify Alaska Native and American Indian nurses throughout the nation in order to gather demographic data.
- To disseminate information about Alaska Native and American Indian nurses at a national and local level.
- To ensure Alaska Native and American Andean nurses receive equal access to opportunities afforded all nurses.
- To formulate position statement son Alaska Native and American Indian issues of professional practice and to lobby for professional advancement of Alaska Native and American Indian nurses.
- To promote leadership and professional advancement of Alaska Native and American Indian nurses.