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SBVC To Celebrate November as Native American Heritage Month

Storytelling event on November 15th featuring Jacque Tahuka-Nunez, Ernest Siva, and Malcolm Margolin highlights campus tribute to Native American Heritage Month

sbvc celebrates native american heritage monthSBVC will pay tribute to Native Americans this November as part of Native American Heritage Month being celebrated by the 11,500-student campus. 

The highlight of the month will be a Native American Storytelling event hosted by SBVC’s Arts, Lectures, and Diversity Committee on Thursday, November 15, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. in the Library Viewing Room. The day will feature Jacque Tahuka-Nunez, Ernest Siva, and Malcolm Margolin as they share California’s native history, storytelling, and literature while presenting their native stories (see storytellers’ biographies at end of release).

As a precursor to Native American Heritage Month, SBVC student club MEChA hosted the 7th Annual Indigenous People’s Film Festival that showcased the plight of indigenous peoples by screening a different documentary film each Monday afternoon in October. In addition, banners have been erected on light poles around the campus to celebrate the dignity of the Native American population. The banners feature an image of Plains Indian warrior White Beaver who participated in the Battle of the Little Bighorn that felled General George Custer.

San Bernardino Valley College’s Arts, Lectures & Diversity Committee plans and promotes a series of lectures and cultural events designed to celebrate diversity and enrich the instructional environment of the college. Membership includes a mixture of faculty, classified staff, and managers.


Jacque Tahuka-Nunez

Jacque has made a successful career out of sharing her Acjachemen ancestors’ story. She prides herself on preserving and passing her culture along through the oral Native American tradition of storytelling. While attending college at USC, she traveled across the country competing on the National Collegiate Speech Circuit and American Forensic League. She received the Most Outstanding Speaker Award from USC for three years and numerous medals for superior accomplishments. After graduating from USC and Pacific Christian College she began to teach in elementary schools, where she enjoyed teaching for over 17 years. She has shared her stories at Disneyland, Los Angeles and Anaheim Convention Centers, hundreds of schools, libraries, non-profit entities and also at several southern California events. Jacque resides in San Juan Capistrano, California with her husband Ed Nunez and their children.

Ernest Siva

November 15 at 11:30 in the Library Viewing Room willl feature a native american storytelling event Ernest Siva, 71, is a longtime teacher and cultural bearer who has dedicated his life to sharing cultural knowledge, traditions, and values with Cahuilla-Serrano tribal members of all ages and the greater public community. Ernest Siva grew up on the Morongo Indian Reservation near Banning and learned the Serrano language and culture at home. He earned bachelor and master's degrees in music education and choral music from the University of Southern California (USC). For years he taught music in schools at all levels—including classes in American Indian music and world arts and cultures at UCLA. Mr. Siva serves as Tribal historian and Cultural Advisor for the Morongo Band of Indians and the Distinguished Guest Artist in Native American Culture at California State University, San Bernardino. He is also the President and founder of Dorothy Ramon Learning Center, Inc., a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that saves and shares Southern California Native American cultures, languages, history, and music, including other traditional arts. Mr. Siva also serves on the boards of the California Indian Storytelling Association; Idyllwild Arts; Riverside Arts Council; and the artistic director of the Pass Chorale, a community chorus in the San Gorgonio Pass area.

Georgiana Sanchez

Georgiana Sanchez is an American Indian Studies lecturer since 1986 who received her bachelor's (1985) and master's (1992) degrees from CSU Long Beach. She was on the scene when Chumash oars stirred the Santa Barbara Channel in 2004 for only the second time in at least 150 years. “There is a lot of healing that goes on in the process of storytelling, which is one reason why the California Indian Storytellers Association is trying to advance these stories as a cultural asset.”

Malcolm Margolin

Malcolm Margolin is executive director of Heyday, an independent nonprofit publisher and unique cultural institution, which he founded in 1974. Margolin is the author of several books, including The Ohlone Way: Indian Life in the San Francisco-Monterey Bay Area, named by the San Francisco Chronicle as one of the hundred most important books of the twentieth century by a western writer. He has received dozens of prestigious awards among which are the Fred Cody Award Lifetime Achievement from the San Francisco Bay Area Book Reviewers Association, the Helen Crocker Russell Award for Community Leadership from the San Francisco Foundation, the Carey McWilliams Award for Lifetime Achievement from the California Studies Association, an Oscar Lewis Award for Western History from the Book Club of California, a Hubert Bancroft Award from Friends of the Bancroft Library, a Cultural Freedom Award from the Lannan Foundation, and a Distinguished Service Award from the Society of Professional Journalists. He serves on the boards of two organizations he helped found:  Bay Nature Institute and Alliance for California Traditional Artists.