Five Designs for a National Native American Veterans Memorial Juried June 12

Eileen Maxwell

Public invited to observe designers' presentations to blue-ribbon jury and to comment at

News Release

National Museum of the American Indian

Five design proposals for a National Native American Veterans Memorial will be juried on June 12 at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C. The public is invited to observe the designers' presentations to the jury and to comment at

Few outside Indian Country and the military know that Native Americans have willingly served the U.S. armed forces since the American revolution and in numbers today that exceed the percentage of any other population group. To recognize their extraordinary service, Congress charged the Smithsonian's National Museum of the American Indian to build a National Native American Veterans Memorial to give “all Americans the opportunity to learn of the proud and courageous tradition of service of Native Americans in the Armed Forces of the United States.” The Veterans Memorial will be located on the museum's grounds on the National Mall.

The museum opened an international design competition for the memorial on Veterans Day 2017. The competition drew 413 registrations from five continents, North and South America, Africa, Asia and Europe. A blue-ribbon jury of Native and non-Native artists, designers, scholars and veterans examined 120 completed submittals resulting in the final five design concepts. From the five final designs, only one will be selected for the memorial.

Tuesday June 12

Rasmuson Theater (First Floor)

10:15–10:30 a.m. Opening Remarks by Donald (Don) J. Stastny, FAIA, FAICP, FCIP, Competition Manager

10:30–11:15 a.m. Team Presentation: Wellspring of Valor (Dinh), Los Angeles

James Dihnis a public artist and landscape architect who founded studiodinh in Los Angeles to explore notions of history, place, and ecology within the context of public space

1:15–11:30 a.m. Break

11:30 a.m.–12:15 p.m. Team Presentation: The Enduring Dance (Rocknak), upstate New York

Stefanie Rocknakis a sculptor and professor of philosophy in upstate New York who focuses on figurative wood sculptures

12:15–1:00 p.m. Lunch

1:00–1:45 p.m. Team Presentation: Ribbon of Time (Transfield), Orem, Utah

Leroy Transfield(Māori: Ngai Tahu/Ngati Toa) is a sculptor originally from New Zealand, studied in Hawaii and founded his own studio in Orem, Utah where he currently resides

1:45–2:00 p.m. Break

2:00–2:45 p.m. Team Presentation: We Fought for Our Country (Jones/Haney), Oklahoma

Dan SaSuWeh Jones (Ponca)is a writer, producer, and artist and is the former Chairman of the Ponca Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma, Oklahoma

Enoch Kelly Haney (Seminole)is a sculptor and artist who has served three terms in the Oklahoma House of Representatives and is currently serving in the Oklahoma State Senate

2:45–3:00 p.m. Break

3:00–3:45 p.m. Team Presentation: Warriors’ Circle of Honor (Pratt), Oklahoma

Harvey Pratt (Cheyenne /Arapaho)a multi-media artist and leading forensic artist, retired as the police forensic artist for the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation

For complete information about the National Native American Veterans Memorial, please consult the museum's website at:

FOR PRESS: The designers are only available on June 12 for press interviews. To arrange interviews, contact Eileen Maxwell from the museum's press office:, 202-633-6615 (office) 202-436-6805 (cell).

Hi-res images of the final designs from different angels and elevations along with each design teams’ statement are available here:

An online media kit of past press releases and related images is located here:

Photo caption and credits:

Ernest Childers (Muscogee [Creek]) receives the Congressional Medal of Honor from Lieutenant General Jacob L. Devers (left). 5th Army headquarters, April 8, 1944.

Lieutenant Childers received the honor because, working under heavy enemy fire, he wiped out two German machine gun nests near Oliveto, Italy, killing enemy snipers and capturing an artillery observer.

Bettmann / Getty Images


Press Pool