Studi is the first recipient of the Standing Bear Courage Award

The Chief Standing Bear Prize for Courage Project named actor Wes Studi as the first recipient of the Chief Standing Bear Prize for Courage.

The Chief Standing Bear Project, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation, was established in 2022 to promote the life and civil rights legacy of Ponca Chief Standing Bear by presenting public discussion groups, forums, conferences and other events at the national level. .

The project’s initial kickoff program features the Standing Bear Award for Courage, given to a Native American who exemplifies courage in the spirit of Standing Bear by doing what is right rather than what is expedient.

Katie Brossy, chair of the board of the Chief Standing Bear Project, said Studi was selected based on his acting career.

“Mr. Studi showed real courage in bringing his unique presence to each of his roles, which enabled a wider audience to see beyond Native American stereotypes and caricatures, and see instead natives as humans,” Brossy said. “That’s really what Chief Standing Bear stood for in federal district court in 1879, when he persuaded a federal judge to recognize Native Americans as ‘persons’. within the meaning of the law.Over the course of his life, not only through his acting roles, but in his dedication and passionate activism in the promotion and preservation of Indigenous languages, Mr. Studi has shown great courage in the spirit of Chief Standing Bear It is particularly significant that Mr. Studi’s acting career began with his role in the 1988 PBS production of “The Trial of Standing Bear.”

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As the recipient of the award, Studi received his award at the Lied Center for Performing Arts on Indigenous Peoples Day, Monday, October 10. He received a statuette of Chief Standing Bear created by famed artist Benjamin Victor, sculptor of the iconic Statuary Hall. Chief sculpture of the standing bear, as well as a cash retribution.

For more information about the award and the awards event, visit

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