Going Home 10: Native Community and Agency Perspectives - Roberta Conner
The 1989 National Museum of the American Indian Act (NMAIA) opened a new era in relations between Native Americans and museums by giving legal weight to the spiritual and ethical concerns of tribes. To commemorate 25 years of repatriation, the National Museum of the American Indian has convened this symposium to discuss the history of the NMAIA, current repatriation practices at the Smithsonian Institution, and the future of repatriation beyond political and geographical boundaries. In this segment, panel moderator Roberta Conner, Director of the Tamástslikt Cultural Institute, introduces the panel topic, "Putting the NMAIA in a Broader Context: Native Community and Agency Perspectives." Roberta “Bobbie” Conner (Sísaawipam) has been the director of Tamástslikt (Tah-mahst-slickt) Cultural Institute since before its opening in 1998. The 45,000-square-foot museum is the only tribally-owned interpretive center on the entire National Historic Oregon Trail. The Institute, a certified Lewis & Clark Interpretive Site, serves three purposes: accurately present the Cayuse, Umatilla, and Walla Walla Tribal histories; perpetuate Tribal knowledge and culture; and contribute to the Tribal economy. Conner currently serves on the Eastern Oregon Leadership Council for the Oregon Community Foundation. She is the immediate past chair of the Board of Trustees for the National Museum of the American Indian and served on the Board of Directors of the American Alliance of Museums for the past six years. Conner is Cayuse, Umatilla, and Nez Perce and a member of the Confederated Tribes of Umatilla. The symposium, "Going Home: 25 Years of Repatriation Under the NMAI Act," was webcast and recorded at the Rasmuson Theater of the National Museum of the American Indian on November 19, 2014.