The Power of Partnerships: Celebrate World AIDS Day in Everett, Nov. 30

Rapid HIV testing during the day; evening memorial walk & program

Press Release, Kristin Kinnamon, Communications Manager

SNOHOMISH COUNTY, Wash. – The public is welcome to free events in downtown Everett to commemorate World AIDS Day 2012 on Friday, Nov. 30. A collaboration of local agencies is sponsoring a resource fair, HIV testing, a memorial walk, and an evening program that includes refreshments, artwork and music. All activities take place at the Snohomish Health District, 3020 Rucker Ave., Everett.

The World AIDS Day events will commemorate those lost to AIDS, support those living with the disease, reinforce the need to combat stigma, discrimination and intolerance, and underscore the need for routine HIV screening.

This year’s special emphasis is to raise awareness that people living with HIV are also at risk for tuberculosis. While 1/3 of the world’s population is infected with the tuberculosis bacterium, most people never get sick. However, TB is the leading killer among people living with HIV. In 2011, 1.4 million people in the world died from TB, and of those, 430,000 of them were HIV positive.

“The unfounded fears surrounding tuberculosis and people with TB mirrors the fears people have had about AIDS,” said Snohomish Health District HIV/AIDS program manager Brenda Newell. “Neither disease is caught by casual contact, and both are treatable once detected.”

An estimated one in five Americans infected with HIV is unaware of it. According to the Washington State Department of Health, 707 people in Snohomish County are currently known to be living with HIV. Screening for tuberculosis is recommended for HIV-positive people.

Nov. 30 Schedule of Events

·        9 am – 4 pm: Free or low-cost confidential Rapid HIV Testing

·        noon – 6 pm: Community health resource tables

·        5 – 6:30 pm: Light refreshments catered by Ross Day

·        5:30 pm: Walk to Everett’s AIDS Memorial at 3021 Wetmore Ave.

·        6:30 pm: World AIDS Day Program

The evening program includes remarks by Dr. Gary Goldbaum, Snohomish Health District director and health officer, Teresa Rugg, Snohomish County RESULTS group leader, Patricia Yepassis-Zembrou, Health District epidemiologist, and Dennis Worsham, regional health officer for Public Health Seattle-King County.

The evening program also features music by local musicians Terri Anson and Savannah Woods, and concludes with a candlelight vigil. The commemoration is free and open to the public.

Local sponsors include Snohomish Health District, Evergreen AIDS Foundation, Snohomish County Gay Men’s Task Force, AIDS Project Snohomish County, RESULTS Educational Fund, TB Photovoice, and the AIDS Outreach Project.

Evergreen AIDS Foundation is one of the oldest AIDS service organizations in the country – established in 1985. EAF provides community outreach, counseling and testing, emergency food and housing assistance, volunteer services and support for persons with HIV disease and their families. It serves over 600 clients across six counties, including Snohomish County.

RESULTS Educational Fund was founded in 1980. Their mission is to create the public and political will to end poverty through improved policies and funding for health, education, and economic opportunity.

Established in 1959, the Snohomish Health District works for a safer and healthier community through disease prevention, health promotion, and protection from environmental threats. Call 425.339.5298 for information about Snohomish Health District’s HIV/AIDS education and outreach programs and services, or visit our Web site:


·        Washington State Department of Health



·        National Prevention Information Network

·        United Nations HIV/AIDS Program

·        AIDS Project Snohomish County

·        Snohomish County Gay Men’s Task Force

·        TB Photovoice

·        AIDS Outreach Project

·        Evergreen AIDS Foundation


United Way Announces Three-Year Grant Opportunity

Press Release, Neil Parekh, Vice President of Marketing and Communications, United Way of Snohomish County

(Everett, Wash.) — United Way plans to invest in programs that support the optimal development of children and youth, improve access to basic needs and ensure that residents in Snohomish County are connected and engaged with their community.

Snohomish County nonprofits must meet certain minimum eligibility requirements and have or plan to establish programs that address the priorities identified by United Way’s volunteer-led Vision Councils.  Applicants must submit a letter of intent (submitted online) by December 20. Potential applicants are invited, but not required, to attend one of two Bidders’ Conferences: Tuesday, Nov. 27th from 10am – 12pm or Tuesday, Dec. 4th from 10am – 12pm. More information is on United way’s website at

“This is a volunteer-driven process,” said Dennis G. Smith, president and CEO of United Way of Snohomish County. “Every three years our volunteer committee members meet with experts to understand the needs of our community. Based on that work, they identify priority investment areas. Once proposals are submitted, our volunteers will review and make decisions on where our donors’ contributions will best be invested.

Award decisions will be made in May 2013.

The priority investment areas for the 2013-2016 funding cycle fall into three categories:

1.    To ensure the optimal development of children and youth in Snohomish County, United Way will support programs across the youth spectrum, from birth to age 18. We will do this by investing in programs that focus on early learning, after school programs, foster care, and family engagement and support.

2.    To increase the ability of all individuals and families to live self-sufficient lives, United Way will invest in programs that increase the ability of families to find secure, safe, suitable and affordable housing; offer emergency services (including rent/mortgage assistance, emergency shelter, food  and utility assistance); support access to health care for the uninsured and underinsured; offer career education and job skills training; and offer life skills programs that will help at-risk youth, people with disabilities and others to help them live independently.

3.    To ensure that Snohomish County residents are connected and engaged with their community, United Way will invest in programs that that create an aging-friendly community for seniors; overcome barriers caused by lack of transportation, disability or language; increase access to services through community based centers; and support programs for crime victims.

Eligible applicants must be a 501(c) 3 health and human service agency that can provide an audit or reviewed financial statements for the prior two years and meet other eligibility standards.

The Bidders’ Conferences will be held at the United Way of Snohomish County Board Room, 3120 McDougall Ave, Suite 200, Everett, WA 98201. Please RSVP to Toni Wishon at (425) 374-5523 or via email at as space is limited. Additional details regarding eligibility, the application process and timeline are available at

United Way is a community impact organization serving Snohomish County for more than 70 years. In addition to funding 102 programs through 39 agencies with a special focus on local health and human services, United Way of Snohomish County supports a number of initiatives focusing on early learning and education, financial stability for families, a youth program, North Sound 211 and an emerging initiative in survival English.

To find out more about United Way of Snohomish County, including how you can find help, how to volunteer and how United Way serves our community, please visit our website at

County commissioners call for mediation in Skagit Valley water fight

Press Release, Monday, November 12, 2012, Bellamy Pailthorp         

In Skagit County, a decades-old fight over water rights has come to a head.

County Commissioners are walking away from an agreement they say was originally intended to allocate water permits fairly, while protecting endangered salmon. But now they say that agreement has caused nothing but lawsuits, so they’re seeking mediation instead.

Will Honea is Skagit County’s Civil Attorney. He says the agreement, which has been in place for 16 years, was developed through collaborative talks between tribes, cities, utilities and rural landowners and farmers. It was meant to help all of those interests co-exist in the fertile landscapes of the Skagit River valley, while still guaranteeing enough water for salmon.

“Skagit County signed this agreement to participate in a cooperative water planning process that would reduce rural wells, but not eliminate landowners‘ access to water,” Honea says.

And he says as a result, water rights for people outside cities in Skagit County are strictly budgeted. They now have the toughest restrictions in the state on rural water.

But he says the Swinomish tribe has filed repeated lawsuits, seeking to eliminate the entire water allocation for farmers and rural landowners.

The Swinomish argue the agreement was good as originally written. But they say an illegal amendment in 2006 allows development that would hurt salmon, which is at the heart of the tribe’s culture and economy.

Brian Cladoosby is the tribal chairman.

“We’re salmon people. If our salmon go the way of the buffalo, it’s just a part of our culture that is going to die,” Cladoosby says. “And we’re not only doing it for us. It’s for the non-Indians too. They enjoy that beautiful resource as much as we do.”

Skagit County’s Honea says the three other tribes in the area have dropped out of the lawsuit. And he says the county is tired of fighting in court.

“So what we’re doing is, we’re not going to go to court again,” Honea says. “We’re just going to step away from the conflict and we’re asking the Governor to appoint a qualified mediator to help our community move forward on a more positive path. ”

He says the Swinomish tribe’s argument hinges on a technical error made by the Department of Ecology when they drafted the in-stream flow rule in 2001. And if the Swinomish win, about 6,000 rural landowners would be left without a legal source of water, including about 550 homes that have already been built.

The suit has made it all the way to the State Supreme Court, which hears oral arguments in the case on Wednesday.

Affordable Ski & Snowboard Helmets at Marysville Fire District

Press Release, Maryville Fire District,

MARYSVILLE, Washington –  As winter approaches so does the promise of snow. When families head to the mountains to enjoy snow sports such as skiing, snowboarding and tubing we want to also encourage them to protect their heads by wearing a properly fitted helmet. According to Safe Kids USA, “Helmets, when worn properly can prevent or reduce the effects of 53 percent of the head injuries suffered by children in the United States while skiing or snowboarding.”

The Marysville Fire District is proud to offer ski and snowboard helmets at a cost of $25, which includes a free fitting. Available sizes include small, medium, and large; and they will fit young children through most adults.

The helmets, provided by Safe Kids Snohomish County, are of equal quality to the helmets found in specialty stores, for a fraction of the cost and come with lined padding and ear covers. The cost of the helmet goes back into keeping a supply of helmets stocked throughout the winter months. Neither Marysville Fire District nor Safe Kids Snohomish County makes a profit from the cost.

To purchase a ski helmet, contact Marysville Fire District at (360) 363-8500 to set up a fitting appointment. The person for whom the helmet is intended for must be present at time of fitting and purchase.

To learn more about Safe Kids Snohomish County visit  Safe Kids is a not for profit organization whose mission is to prevent unintentional injuries and death in children.


Burke Museum awarded $575,000 to support Native Art and Artists

Bill Holm Center to serve more individuals and organizations

Press Release,  Alaina Smith, Director of External Affairs

Seattle – The Burke Museum is pleased to announce Connections to Culture – Resources for Native Art and Artists, a new program of the Bill Holm Center for the Study of Northwest Coast Art. With support from the Margaret A. Cargill Foundation, Connections to Culture will significantly increase the Burke Museum’s capacity to support Native artists and arts organizations.

Connections to Culture will expand the Bill Holm Center’s research grants program, which facilitates Native artists’ study of the arts and cultures of their ancestors. Research grants allow artists to study the objects and archives in the Burke Museum’s collections, travel to other museums, and pass their knowledge on through workshops held at the Burke Museum, at other Native art organizations, and in Native communities.

In addition to increasing the research grant program, Connections to Culture will further develop the Bill Holm Center’s role as an information hub to those interested in the vitality of Native art in the region, and allow the Center to make grants to Native arts organizations for the first time.

“The Burke Museum has a long history of pioneering efforts in Native art education and scholarship—from early museum education, public television programs and Bill Holm’s seminal 1965 book, Northwest Coast Native Art: An Analysis of Form, to K-12 arts & culture programs that are booked to capacity each year,” said Burke Museum Executive Director Julie K. Stein.

“This extraordinary investment by the Margaret A. Cargill Foundation builds on that legacy, and will help make the Bill Holm Center’s resources available to many, many more artists and members of our community. ”

While art-making is flourishing in some Native communities, in other places there are few teachers and fewer objects from which to learn. Many artists are working in isolation, without knowledgeable mentors or the critical resources to inform their artistic practice, discover where their cultural objects are currently housed, or access these collections. Connections to Culture will allow the Burke Museum to serve as a hub for the dissemination of this information, and create new digital resources that represent the breadth and depth of Pacific Northwest art traditions.

Historical trends in collecting and researching Pacific Northwest regional art, and the impact of the art market on contemporary artists, has meant that the styles of the northern and some central Northwest Coast tribes (the Tlingit, Tsimshian, Haida, and Kwakwaka’wakw) have overshadowed other art traditions from the southern regions of the Coast, as well as surrounding areas of the Columbia River basin and Plateau. “The Connections to Culture program will help us to expand support for artists and communities whose artistic traditions have not received broad public, scholarly, or commercial recognition,” said Curator of Native American Art and Bill Holm Center Director Robin K. Wright.

“We are thrilled to combine efforts with the Margaret A. Cargill Foundation’s Native Arts and Cultures Program to increase support for Native artists in their pursuit of knowledge about their artistic traditions,” said Wright.

Connections to Culture will award grants and offer programs beginning in spring 2013.

About the Bill Holm Center:

The Bill Holm Center for the Study of Northwest Coast Art was established at the Burke Museum in 2003 to continue Bill Holm’s legacy at the Burke Museum. It is one of the premier centers for the study of Native arts of the Pacific Northwest Coast.

The Bill Holm Center provides hands-on learning opportunities for Native artists to study historical art in person, and connects experienced artists with younger practitioners through workshops and art scholarships. The Center supports access to and awareness of arts resources and activities (including collections, exhibits, and other relevant programs) for tribal communities, individuals, and arts organizations.

About the Burke Museum:

The Burke Museum inspires people to value their connection with all life—and act accordingly. The Museum is responsible for Washington State collections of natural and cultural heritage, and sharing the knowledge that makes them meaningful. The Burke welcomes a broad and diverse audience and provides a community gathering place that nurtures life-long learning and encourages respect, responsibility, and reflection.

Native Americans make their voices heard in presidential election

Tribal member voters show good turnout in the 2012 election.

Article and photo by Jeannie Briones

TULALIP, Washington – Tulalip Tribal members and employees showed their support at the Tulalip Ballot Party on November 6th at the Don Hatch Youth Center/Greg Williams Court, exercising their right to vote.

“To me it’s one of my most treasured constitutional rights, and as a veteran, I always take the time to cast my ballot,” said tribal member Raymond Fryberg Sr.

Tulalip Community Coordinator, Frieda Williams, along with seven other hardworking folks that make up the Tulalip Voting Committee, worked tirelessly to promote the importance of the Native vote.

“I am very excited about the turn out at Tulalip; their vote does count,” said Frieda.

Native Americans are the only ethnicity the U.S. Census Bureau doesn’t track when it comes to election data. It’s important that Native Americans are voting and electing candidates who understand Native American sovereignty rights.

This election ballot party served as a good incentive for people to turn in their ballots, offering food, entertainment and raffle prizes. Prizes included a 55” flat screen TV and an iPod.

For information on voter registration, contact Frieda Williams at 360-716-4220 or visit,

Governor Gregoire honors Tulalip storyteller, Johnny Moses

Press Release, Cathy Cochrane, ArtsWA, Communications Manager

Olympia – Johnny Moses, of Tulalip, has been named as one of seven recipients of the Governor’s Arts & Heritage Awards. Recipients were honored at a reception at the Governor’s Mansion on Oct. 15. The awards recognize individuals and organizations who have made significant contributions to the arts and cultural traditions of Washington state.

Mr. Moses, a Native American traditional singer and storyteller, speaks eight Native languages and travels extensively to share his culture. He was raised in the remote Nuu-chah-nulth village of Ohiat on the West Coast of Vancouver Island, Canada. His grandparents taught him the traditional ways, and his elders sent him to share their teachings with all people. Mr. Moses’ traditional name is (Walking Medicine Robe).

The Washington State Arts Commission, ArtsWA, facilitated the nomination and selection process for the Governor’s awards. The awards were established in 1966 by Governor Dan Evans. In recent years, they were temporarily suspended due to budget cuts.

“We are so pleased to reinstate the awards this year,” said Kris Tucker, Executive Director of ArtsWA. “Johnny Moses has incredible skill as a storyteller and a wealth of irreplaceable information about the Northwest’s Native cultures. Recognizing and honoring his contributions to the heritage of Washington state affirms that traditions of the past are vitally important to the cultural legacy we leave to future generations.”

First Gentleman Mike Gregoire and Kris Tucker presented the awards, which were acid-etched, translucent glass bowls by glass artists Jeremy Newman and Allison Ciancibelli, commissioned through Vetri Glass Studio, in Seattle.

Others receiving the Governor’s Heritage Award:

  • Bailadores de Bronce, Seattle, a volunteer group that teaches and performs Mexican folkloric dances
  • Heritage University, Toppenish, provides strong art and cultural education programs for multicultural populations that are geographically and educationally isolated
  • Maurice Rouman, Everett, Egyptian oud player and composer, nominated for the National Endowment for the Arts National Heritage Fellowship Award. (The oud is a stringed instrument resembling the lute.)

Receiving the Governor’s Arts Award:

  • Lucia Perillo, Olympia, Pulitzer Prize finalist and MacArthur fellow in poetry
  • Robert Maki, Kingston, sculptor and public art advocate
  • Book-It Repertory Theatre, Seattle, which creates great theater from great literature

For more information about ArtsWA programs and the Governor’s Arts and Heritage Awards, go to

First Gentleman, Mike Gregoire, and ArtsWA Executive Director, Kris Tucker, with the Governor’s Arts and Heritage Award recipients in the Governor’s Mansion, Oct. 15. Photo by Weldon Wilson.

Tulalip Tribes makes gift of $1.11 million to Marysville School District

Press Release, Jodi Runyon, Marysville School District Superintendent’s Office

For the second year in a row, Tulalip Tribes has made a significant gift to Marysville School District.  This gift represents the continued partnership between Tulalip Tribes and Marysville School District.  “Education is an important part of our future – the future of our students and the future of our community,” said Mel Sheldon, Chairman of Tulalip Tribes.

The previous gift from Tulalip Tribes paid for a district-wide middle school science adoption, district test reporting and provided additional support for Tulalip students.  “That gift helped us keep the focus on instruction in spite of difficult budget cuts,” said Larry Nyland, Marysville Superintendent.

This gift provides extra support for district test reporting and for students at Quil Ceda and Tulalip Elementary, Totem Middle School and Heritage High School.  The gift will also provide for smaller class sizes, staff training, and instructional support at those four schools.

Quil Ceda and Tulalip Elementary received national recognition this summer for their teamwork in improving student learning.  They received second place recognition by Learning Forward at the national conference attended by 15,000 educators.  The work being done at Quil Ceda and Tulalip resulted in the training of 33 additional teachers to help spread the work district-wide.

“Our partnership with Tulalip is helping us address the needs of Tulalip students.  As a result, we are learning new strategies that will benefit students district-wide,” said Larry Nyland, school superintendent.

“We value the work that we are doing together and believe that this gift will help us continue good work for our young people,” said Mel Sheldon, Chairman of Tulalip Tribes.

Tulalip Resort Casino first tribal hotel to be honored with “Outstanding Property of the Year” award

Tulalip Resort Casino

Press Release, Ken Kettler, President & COO, Tulalip Resort Casino

TULALIP, Washington –Tulalip Resort Casino is honored to be the first tribal hotel to receive the “Outstanding Property of the Year” award from The Washington Lodging Association (WLA).  With the receipt of this accolade, Tulalip will qualify to be considered for the “National Outstanding Property” award by the American Hospitality Lodging Association.

“This tribute really belongs to our incredible hospitality team, for their passion and continuing dedication to creating an exceptional experience for our guests,” says Kenneth Kettler, Tulalip Resort Casino President and COO.  “The WLA’s recognition is a perfect complement to the acknowledgement the hotel has received from AAA with the presentation of the Four Diamond award.”

Tulalip Resort Casino is located on the Tulalip Indian Reservation near Marysville. The 12-story, luxury hotel opened August 15, 2008 and includes 370 guest rooms with numerous specialty suites, such as the 3,000 square-foot Tulalip Suite, the 2,000 square-foot Player’s Suite; the Technology Suite; and two Asian-themed suites. All standard rooms at the hotel sport granite countertops, dark African wenge-wood trim, 47-inch flat-screen TVs, iPod docks, triple-headed showers and floor-to-ceiling windows. Authentic tribal art, valued at more than $1 million, is incorporated into the hotel’s interior design.

The Washington Lodging Association, incorporated in 1920, is the non-profit trade and professional association dedicated to the interests of the lodging industry in Washington State. They are a resource for news and events, member benefits and programs, directories and publications. WLA members are represented by hoteliers and hospitality professionals from the Pacific Northwest.

For more information about Tulalip Resort Casino visit  To learn more about the Washington Lodging Association, visit


About Tulalip Resort Casino

Award winning Tulalip Resort Casino is the most distinctive gaming, dining, meeting, entertainment and shopping destination in Washington State. The AAA Four Diamond resort’s world class amenities have ensured its place on the Condé Nast Traveler Gold and Traveler Top 100 Resorts lists, as well as Preferred Hotel & Resorts membership. The property includes 192,000 square feet of gaming excitement; a luxury hotel featuring 370 guest rooms and suites; 30,000 square feet of premier meeting, convention and wedding space; the full-service T Spa; and six dining venues.  It also showcases the intimate Canoes Cabaret; a 3,000-seat amphitheater; and Seattle Premium Outlets, featuring more than 110 name brand retail discount shops. The Resort Casino is conveniently located between Seattle and Vancouver, B.C. just off Interstate-5 at exit 200. It is an enterprise of the Tulalip Tribes. For reservations please call (866) 716-7162.


Two Indians, by Matika Wilbur

By Kim Kalliber; photos by Matika Wilbur

SEATTLE, Washington – Photography can have such an impact on our lives. Discovering nature’s beauty and exploring new cultures and opening minds to new ideas, these concepts are all found in the work of Matika Wilbur.  Her emotionally complex photographs examine how Native people face cultural dualities and the connection between their culture and contemporary pop culture.

Matika is from the Swinomish and Tulalip Tribes. Her work has been shown in regional, national and international venues, such as the Royal British Columbia Museum of Fine Arts, the Nantes Museum of Fine Arts in France, the Seattle Art Museum and the Burke Museum.

Now you can find Matika’s latest project on Kickstarter, a funding platform for creative projects. Kickstarter is an online site full of independent, ambitious and imaginative projects that are brought to life through direct support of others.

Matika’s project on Kickstarter, 562 A Photo Project Documenting Native America, is currently accepting donations.  The goal is to create a publication, exhibition, and lecture series documenting all 562 Tribes in the United States, although the ultimate goal is education. Matika will be traveling the United States in a photo studio equipped RV, paying a visit to all 52 states, and all 562 Federally Recognized Tribes. She will be using these donations for travel expenses, film and darkroom supplies and website development.

“I am so excited about my upcoming journey,” said Matika. “I feel as though all of the work that I have done up until this point has prepared me for a project of this magnitude.”

My mom, Matika Wilbur

Matika goes on to describe events in her life that led her to explore Native cultures through the camera  lens.

“When I was 17 years old I got sober, and have remained sober for the last 11 years and it was because of this experience that I had the courage to pursue higher education at The Brooks Institute of Photography. After I graduated, I took my first internship with Round Earth Productions photographing indigenous people in South America, where I realized that I hadn’t ever photographed my own people – so I came home, and began ‘We Are One People,’ a series of character study portraits documenting Coast Salish Elders. ‘We Are One People’ hangs in the Tulalip Admin Building, and has been shown at several museums. The success of ‘We Are One People’ catapulted my career into projects that explore our “indian-ness.”

Organic vs Origin, Matika Wilbur

“All of those experiences led me back to Tulalip Heritage High School to teach photography, where I learned so much working with our youth, and really had the opportunity to re-connect,” Matika continued. “I didn’t realize that all of that travel, exhibition and teaching would lead me to this- but I’m glad that it did. I’m so grateful for all of the support that I’ve received from my family and friends, I feel so blessed.”

Funding levels vary on Kickstarter and each pledge level offers the backers specific items in return. For instance, with a pledge of $10 or more, backers will receive a digital copy of the “562” book, while a pledge of $2,500 or more will entitle backers to join Matika on the road for two days as she explores Indian Country, along with receiving the awards offered at the $1,000 level.

Matika will be having an “End of Kickstarter” bash on October 28th in Seattle, with live music performed by Kore Ionz and Bakra Bata. Visit for more information and location of this event.

This project will only be funded if at least $30,000 is pledged on Kickstarter by Novemer 1st. For information and to become a backer, visit and enter 562 under “search projects.”

For more information on Matika Wilbur, visit