Service League celebrates 50th anniversary

SEATTLE – The American Indian Women’s Service League celebrated its 50th anniversary Sept. 12.

The Service League was chartered in 1957; its mission, “to make Indians part of the community they live in and to get non-Indians to recognize us as an Indian group,” the first director, Pearl Warren, Makah, said in an essay on HistoryLink.org.

In the ensuing 50 years, the Service League founded several organizations and programs, among them the Seattle Indian Center, United Indians of All Tribes, the Seattle Indian Health Board, the American Indian Youth Club, and Traditions and Beyond, a Native arts and crafts shop.

“This is an opportunity to pay tribute to the amazing Native women who founded the American Indian Women’s Service League and to learn more about the contributions of AIWSL,” said Iris Friday, loan coordinator at the U.S. Housing and Urban Development’s Northwest Office of Native American Programs.

For more information, e-mail info@nwnativeinfo.com; or call Friday at (360) 689-5856.

Richard Walker is a correspondent reporting from San Juan Island, Wash. Contact him at rmwalker@rockisland.com.