Skip to main content

Public Media for Northern California


2014 American Indian Heroes

Christine Antone

Christine Antone
Tohono O'Odham

Christine is a mother, grandmother, auntie and sister to many American Indians in San Francisco. She is a big advocate in the community for services, childcare, housing, mental health and drug abuse supportive services for all people in San Francisco. Christine volunteers tirelessly at all Friendship house and Native American Center events and that she volunteered for San Francisco Unified School District at George Moscone Elementary School and the Indian Education Program, Title VII, S.F. Also, that she is an advocate for youth services for our community. Christine is passionate about advocating for American Indian families to be treated with respect.


Nathan Blacksmith

Nathan Blacksmith
Lakota and Dakota

Nathan has made a significant impact while working as the Senior Substance Abuse Counselor at Friendship House Association of American Indians; he is a dedicated and cares deeply about his clients. With a warm and caring demeanor, Nathan works heavily within the community to bring back traditional healing practices through drumming, preparing for ceremony and running the male sweat ceremonies. Nathan is a role model to his community and has a strong commitment to his family as a father and husband.


Renita Brien

Renita Brien
Nez Perce Tribe of Idaho

Renita is an enrolled member of the Nez Perce Tribe of Idaho and descendant of Old Chief Joseph and Old Chief Looking Glass who are of historical signifance to the tribe.Renita Brien has been a long-time core member and supporter of the American Indian/Alaska Native community in Santa Clara County. She is a pillar that we all rely on because she is consistent, reliable, dependable, and always contributes whenever needed.

She is currently the Treasurer and a member of the American Indian Allicance for many, many years. The Alliance is the main social organizing group for the South Bay Native community. As the Treasurer Renita is involved in the planning of every community event that has been held which the Alliance has been involved with. Renita's steady presence, integrity, honesty and dependability have added tremendous support to our community.

Renita is an individual who we may rely on and is quiet and unassuming, but her strength and contributions are immeasurable. She would never call attention to herself or say she deserved an award like this, and has never received recognition for her many contributions. For this reason, the Indian Health Center of Santa Clara Valley and the American Indian Alliance are proud to nominate Renita as a 2014 KQED Local Hero.


Randolph Pico

Randolph Pico

Randolph is the Engineering Directorate Senior Superintendent at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory located in Livermore, California. With over 34 years supporting science and technology in areas that include National Security, Fusion Energy, Environmental and High Energy physics, Randy works tirelessly to increase the pool of Native Americans participating in academic disciplines that include science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). He is a member of the American Indian Science and Engineering Society and recognized as a Sequoyah Fellows for his commitment to STEM and to the American Indian community. Organizations where he is active include the University of California American Indian Counselor Recruiters Association, MESA (Mathematics Engineering Science Achievement) and SACNAS (Society for Advancement of Hispanics/Chicanos and Native Americans in Science), ShadowBird Inc., and the D2K diversity think tank. He participates in science and cultural presentations as well as leadership, mentorship, and other acts of service that support students and professionals. In addition to taking part and sponsoring bay area powwows he often serves as master of ceremonies and arena director. Randy is passionate about outreach efforts that support and encourage a better understanding of Native American culture and society while promoting science and engineering technology studies. He was recently inducted into the Golden State Gourd Society and is committed to supporting and honoring the powwow arena and well-being of the Native Americans.


Also on KQED.org this week ...

Thanksgiving Recipes
KQED Science's Top Five Stories of 2014

From the launch of our original web video series Deep Look to our stories over the science of schizophrenia and the politics of water — it's been another year of diverse storytelling from the KQED Science team. Here's a round-up of our top 5 stories (based on page views) that you enjoyed in 2014.

Yo Yo Ma
KQED Celebrates the Holidays

Find holiday-related KQED television and radio programming, Bay Area events, recipes, and other Web-exclusive goodies.

Sponsored by