Shoshone-Paiute, North Paiute women receive Nevada Humanities awards |

Shoshone-Paiute, North Paiute women receive Nevada Humanities awards

First Nation’s Focus
The 2019 Nevada Humanities award winners pose for a photo on April 18 at the Nevada Museum of Art. Two Native women were honored — Melissa Melero-Moose (third from left, standing) and Colene Paradise (third from right, standing).
Courtesy photo

RENO, Nev. — The nonprofit Nevada Humanities biennially (every other year) presents five awards, which recognize individuals and organizations that foster cultural enrichment and deepen our understanding of the human experience by facilitating opportunities for Nevadans to engage with the humanities.

In addition to the Judith Winzeler Award for Excellence in the Humanities, Nevada Humanities adjudicates awards to honor outstanding humanities advocacy, teaching, and public humanities programming.

In April, Nevada Humanities announced the 11 winners of the 2019 awards, two of whom are local Native women:

Colene Paradise, Outstanding Teaching of the Humanities Award: Colene is a member of the Shoshone-Paiute Tribe who hails from the Duck Valley Indian Reservation in Owyhee where she has exemplified teaching of the humanities. She has worked closely with Owyhee youth to help them find their voice as citizens. She has worked with students on “The Deep West Videos,” in which students have become filmmakers and created short videos about their heritage and community.

Melissa Melero-Moose, Humanities Rising Star Award: Melissa is a mixed media visual artist, mother and a Northern Paiute enrolled with the Fallon Paiute-Shoshone Tribe. She is currently a Peter S. Poole Research Fellow at the Nevada Museum of Art, where she is compiling a comprehensive archive for the Great Basin Native Artists. She is deeply committed to working with Native American artists, who live and work in the Great Basin, and is dedicated to preserving and promoting their work.

On April 18, all 11 recipients were honored at a reception at the Nevada Museum of Art. In celebration of the creativity and sense of place the awardees have helped foster, the awards presented were original works of art created by Nevada artist Fawn Douglas, who is a member of the Las Vegas Paiute Tribe.

Below is the full list of 2019 Nevada Humanities Award recipients:

Judith Winzeler Award for Excellence in the Humanities: Judith F. Simpson, Reno; and Claytee D. White, Las Vegas

Friend and Champion of the Humanities Award: Capital City Arts Initiative, Carson City; and Monique Laxalt, Reno

Humanities Rising Star Award: Justin Favela, Las Vegas; Melissa Melero-Moose, Sparks; Vogue M. Robinson, North Las Vegas; and Mark Salinas, Carson City

Outstanding Teaching of the Humanities Award: Colene Paradise, Owyhee; and Brett M. Van Hoesen, Reno

Outstanding Humanities Project Award: National Cowboy Poetry Gathering, Western Folklife Center, Elko

Go to to learn more about Nevada Humanities and the nonprofit’s biennial awards.


RSIC Education Column: Educators building bridges

November 25, 2019

I am over the moon with how strong our school-community relationship is, how easy it was to grow, and surprised by the willingness of my community, students and parents alike, to move in this direction too.

See more