The Honor Chair

On the stage at the Boldt 40 celebration, a lone chair was placed stage left, draped in a blanket with small basket in the seat. This was the “Honor Chair”. Attendees were asked to contribute names to the basket of people who are important to them and to the treaty fishing rights effort. Those names and groups are posted below. If you would like to contribute to this list, please email

Hank Adams
Frank Allen
Dennis Allen
Phil Anderson
Jake Anderson
Jerry Arca Sr.

B. Tom
Jimmy Barn
Earnie Barr
Gloria Bean
Judge Robert C. Belloni
Ramona Bennett
Judge George Boldt and family
Eloise Boldt
Chairman Knuckle Boome
Marlon Brando
Al Bridges
Maiselle Bridges
Valerie Bridges
Dan C. Brown
Pat Brown
Mike Brownfields
Carol Burns
Robert Burrell
Russ Busch
Mary Jo Butterfield
Jim Byrd Sr.

Sam Cagey Sr.
Elizabeth Tunmer Campbell
Ellery Campbell
Horton Capoeman
Rodney Cawston
Colleen Cawston
Chet Cayou Sr. Qw-Tee-Sa-Luq
Sequoia Chargualaf
Vincent Jesus Chargualaf
Beatrice Charles
Ernie Charles
George W. Charles
Jerry Charles Sr.
Robin Charles
Ron Charles
Ed Claplanhoo
Joseph Lawrence Coniff
Chuck “Doghide” Conway
LeRoy Corville Sr.

Rogue Deanas
David Deanas
Joseph B. DeLaCruz
Herman Dillon Sr.
Dutchman Dillon
Shemen Domnick
Lena Dunsdan
George Dysart

Edna Lane DeLaCruz Ebling
John Echohawk
Pattie Elofson
Lee Evenhuis

Lottie Fentoll
Herbert Fisher
Herbert Fisher Jr.
Ray Forsman
Billy Frank Jr. and family
Robert Free
Russ Fulton

Bennie George
Simon George
David Getches
Bernie Kai Kai Gobin
Eugene Goodell
Lew Goodridge
Alison Bridges Gottfriedson

Sue Halpson
Levi Hamilton
Jim Harp
Elizabeth Pomeroy Harvey
Jim Heckman
Kevin Henry
LaVerne Hepfer
John Hottowe
Charlie A. Howeattle
David Rock Hudson Jr.
Howard Dean Hudson
Ted Hudson Sr.
Ted Hudson Jr.
Shaughnessi Hululani

John Ides Sr.
John Ides
Hillary “Zab” Irving

Uncle Wayne James
Ernest Jefferson Sr.
Eve Jerry
Robert Joe (Wa-Walton)
Herman John (Curly) (Bobe)
Herman Johns
Steve Johns Sr.
Steve Johns
Dale Johnson
Oscar Carl Jones Jr.
Stan Jones Sr. (Scho Hallem)
Victor Jones
James Lawrence Joseph

George Kalama
Georgiana “Porgie” Kautz
Nugent Kautz
Mark Kelly
Curly Kidd (Babe)
Forrest “Dutch” Kinley
Forrest Kinley
Charlene Krise
Claude Kremen-TEO

Zaley Lynn Laramie
Leo LaClair Sr.
Nick Lampsakis
Dr. Barbara Lane
Fred Lane
Nancy Lane
Robert Lane
Vernon Lane
Robert Law
Connor Little
Bill Lopeman
Shirley A. Lopeman
Lorraine Loomis
Vernon J. Louie
Rene Lozier

Michael “Duff” Mail
Doreen Maloney
Eveline Matory
Janet Renecker McCloud (Yet Si Blue)
Don McCloud
Jack McCloud Sr.
George “Bubby” McCloud
Zelma McCloud
Ray “Root” McCloud
Jimmy McCloud
Mamie McCoy
Francis McCrory Sr.
Guy Raymond McMinds
Steve Meadows
Leo Metcalf
Margaret Campbell Meyer
Mike Meyer
Ralph Meyer
Ron Meyer
Charles Mike
Leroy Mills
Sid Mills
Jay Minthorn
Mason Morrisett
Matt Moses
Robert Moses
Lonni Moses
Cecil Moses
Stanley Moses
Frank Mounts
Matt Moses
Phil Mundy

Lester Nelson

Anne Pavel
William E. Penn
Earl Penn
Christian “Jiggs” Penn
Ribs Penn
Calvin J. Peters
Emory Peters
Josephine Peters
Jameson Peters
Charlie Peterson
Gary Peterson
Ron Plant
Stuart Pierson
Loretta Campbell Pomeroy
Randi Purser
Robert A. Purser, Sr.
Dan Raas
Tim Reed
Tommy Reed
Francis O. Rosander
Esther Ross
Larry Rutter

Tahahauent Payne Sablan
Harlan Sam Sr.
Ed Sampson Sr.
Hazel Sampson
Louisa Sampson
Robert Sampson
Dorian Sanchez
Suzanne Satiacum
Bob Satiacum
Buddy Satiacum
Kirk Schmidt
Nancy Shippentower-Games
Jack Simmons
Blanche Simmons
Jean Smith
Bill Smith
Adeline Smith
John Luis Solomon
Doralee Solomon
Jack Solomon
David Sohappy, Sr.
Anthony and Allen Squally
Chuck Starr
Louis Starr Sr.
Daryll Stepetin

Mike Taylor

Sam Ulmer

Helen Val
Vaude D. Via
John Vigil (Chiquetie)

Rex Ward
Reginald Ward Sr.
Buddy Wayne
Judy Wayne
Reuben F. Well Sr.
Bernice White
Bernie Whitebear
Dr. Richard R. Whitney
Bruce Wilkie
Tandy Wilbur Sr.
Doug Wilbur
Floyd Williams
Greg Williams
Ryan Williams
James “Uncle Jimmy” Wilson
James Woodman
Tammoe Woodman
Doug Woodruff Sr.
Fred Woodruff
Judy Wright
Frank Wright Sr.
Florence Dossie Starr Wynn

All the wives and families that stayed at home while our warriors were fighting

The Native Women (Allison Bridges, Porgie Kautz, Maiselle Bridges, Ramona Bennett)

Elders, spouses, children and families that prayed, cooked and smoked our salmon

Future generations

Descendants of Judge George Boldt

The Indians who were here before the white man came to our shores


Treaty Rights At Risk and the Future: What Needs To Be Done

Fawn Sharp, President, Quinault Indian Nation, speaks to what tribes, their leaders and their supporters need to do to work together for Treaty Rights At Risk

Sharp recalled as a little girl fishing with her family on the Quinault River, and the excitement when she saw a cork sunk, which usually meant a fish had been caught.

“I couldn’t imagine myself being separated from that very sacred right.”

She spoke to how The Creator put her and her people on this earth for a reason.

We fought the fight. It’s undeniable – there was something that bound us to the fight and what bound us was the basic principle – The Creator made us Indian people a certain way. The Creator put us in these lands. The Creator put a spirit in us.

When we signed the treaties – it was a young country in 1855. We were 100 years old in the magnitude of the entire world; it was emerging as a powerful country.”

It was this country that tried to assimilate tribes, take away the right to basic things like hunting and fishing but the spirit, with those battles before them – when it seemed like we were losing the battles, we went back to our roots and who we were as The Creator intended.

We see young people in Headstart learning our languages. We see our elders telling our stories and becoming part of writing that history. I was called to remark on the future as a tribal leader.

It seems so daunting.

There are decisions by the feds that diminish the resource and our powers. That diminish the science. The future of the seven generations. The glaciers are melting. It all seems to fall on deaf ears.

We’re trying to protect our treaties at risk, and Billy is asking, who is in charge?

With the Creator’s wisdom and guideance, when we convene meetings and ceremonies, we bring the Creator in to everything we do. I know that’s why Indian people are still here. Even though the most powerful country of the world sought to destroy us.

It’s hard to be in the trenches… but we all know the fight is worth the fight and we all know those who dedicate to the litigation and battle and the spirit of Boldt, the individuals who waved the facts and drew a sense of right and wrong and we know nothing more than what the Creator granted to us. People ask us what we want – we just want to live as the Creator intended for us.

Bob Perciasepe, Environmental Protection Agency, Deputy Administrator

Bob Perciasepe, Environmental Protection Agency, Deputy Administrator

Bob Perciasepe, Environmental Protection Agency, Deputy Administrator, discusses the value of the tribal relationship to the EPA and working together.

I can’t tell you how profound it is to hear about the struggles, which I’ve heard about, but then to hear about them in person today about the Boldt decision.

But if Boldt reminds us where we’ve come from, then there are new urgencies – treaty rights at risk.

How can we avoid this risk – what actions can we take to avoid going down the wrong path? Today our struggle to fulfill our responsibilities and obligations to tribes in the region is evermost in our mind. Threats to tribal fishing are real and it’s much more about the environmental destruction and habitat and it’s the decline of the salmon from all these forces that are play.

The Boldt tribes have that co-management responsibility – but the tribes have forcefully and careful relayed to all of us that co-management authority isn’t enough.  

But I have to tell you – for the fed government, there are many agencies involved with this and it would be unfair if I didn’t tell you there are conflicts within. Different agncies have different legal authorities. These are things you shouldn’t worry about … but we’ve gotten a lot of good advice on how to be better partners with our federal trustees.

We’re working very hard …. we’re working on a process to help solve the policies if they’re in the way of making progress and this means consulting with tribes.

The Elwha dams – it’s been several presidents that have gone by that have been trying to work on this and some have been more ambitious than others to make it a reality. It is a reality and it would not have happened if not for the tribes important careful pushing of the governor. And Norm Dicks. And the colorful voices in DC.

The coho, chinook and pinks are all doing something they haven’t done in a long time – not banging their heads up against a dam. (The dams coming down) seems like a simple feat but it’s a symbol of what we can do when we come together.

Right here in Washington we’re working with the Lummi and Nooksack to evaluate climate impact and how we can protect salmon, for example, in the Nooksack watershed where water temps affect quality of habitat. We know it’s high priority for the tribes and for us too.

This spring, we’re going to propose EPA regulations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and we need your help to support that.

We need to confront all these problems and the treaty rights at risk. But we can’t ignore the air and water and climate issues. They all come back together and they are all connected.

Tomorrow morning, a letter will find its way from DC to the chairman of the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission … to BIlly … and it will talk how the federal government wants to join in this celebration. And speak of our future together. Our future is what counts and government-to-government is what counts and that letter will be signed by Barak Obama.

The lesson is that we must go forward and carry on the Boldt Decision.

Morning Speakers: Personal stories from the Boldt Era


Hank Adams, left, Ramona Bennett and Billy Frank Jr. address the Boldt 40 celebration.


Ramona Bennett, chairwoman of the Puyallup Tribe at the time of the Boldt decision

“With the help of all those various good Indian people and good other people, we were able to get the attention that we needed. The timing was everything. It was during the peace strikes. The civil rights movements. There was change going on. And we got to be part of that change.”

“We went to court. The day I heard about decision. I had my feet up on my desk and when I got the decision phone call, I jumped up and ended up in my wastebasket and yelled, ‘We lost 50% of our fish!’” (Crowd laughs)

Leo LaClair – Muckleshoot Tribe

“Hank Adams was one of our guys who got the press releases and media out there. An idea of the National Indian Youth Council was taking the treaty from Seattle to the governor in Olympia. Wow, that’s a long paddle. We made it. Our objective was to get national attention with Hank Adams and it worked.”

Gilbert Kinggeorge – Muckleshoot Tribe

Re: The 1855-56 treaties:

“The old teaching – never say no to a relative. Again, I spoke earlier how history seems to repeat itself. There were only four tribes that responded. In that time of need, Chief Leschi rode back to visit every tribe in here in the state asking for help to come support us in the first treaty war. You could tell what the response was. Again, here we were with the second treaty war, called the Salmon Wars, Boldt Decision. Nevertheless, we are a proud people because those struggles opened the way for everyone to participate with their treaty rights.”

“We have nothing to be ashamed of. The tribes are champions of habitat.”

Hank Adams – Assiniboine Sioux

“We’ve lost many of the Indian people who love the land and the waters so much to this life of fishing and to this life on the waters and to this life on the land.”

“There are many elements to this fight. There are many generations that have made this fight.”

“This crowd would have been larger if there hadn’t been a (Seahawks Super Bowl) parade today. This crowd would have been at least this large if this had been a potlach in the 1880s or 1890s. This isn’t a big crowd compared to what the Indian crowds were at potlatches were 125 years ago. It wasn’t uncommon to see 1,800 canoes on Commencement Bay. For each canoe, you had a multiple number of people. In 1853, coming from Tacoma/Fort Nisqually to Olympia – Ezra Meeker looked out on the Nisqually and saw Indians of all ages and sexes harvesting their catch, which would have been august, king salmon. There were good numbers involved in this life that the Indian people lead.”

“Frank Law was a S’Klallam who went to Puyallup Industrial School. They played the first Thanksgiving Game in 1898 against University of Washington’s football team. And the Indian school won.

At Christmas, they had to return for what is called the championship of the PNW. PIS and UW – when the Indian team arrived in Seattle – UW said they wouldn’t take the field if Frank Law played since he’d play some semi-pro basketball pick up games. And he beat them in the first game. So they benched him. And UW narrowly won the championship game. Those are the first two games of UW football history.”

“Part of the joke at the time was if you just leave it up to us Montanians, we’ll settle this issue. Thankfully Boldt did and for the long term.”