Bertha Clark Jones
Lifetime Achievement (2007)
Bertha Clark Jones always spoke out for the underdog. If there was person that she felt was being wronged, she would step in. She did it when she was a child growing up with 14 siblings during the depression. She did it while she served in the air force during the war and she did as she became one of the first outspoken voices in the Aboriginal women’s movement. She grew up strong. She excelled in sports and used that skill in her daily life often competing against unbeatable odds and historic prejudices. But she endured and changed the way Native women were treated in the country. She set many firsts in her life and continues to fight for the rights of the underprivileged and disadvantaged. She moved women’s rights groups forward by strides when she co-founded the Alberta Native Women’s Voices in the late 1960s. That organization blossomed to become Native Women’s Association of Canada, a powerful voice for Native women in the country. She was the first President of NWAC and though retired continues to recognize, respect, promote, defend and enhance Native ancestral laws, spiritual beliefs, language and traditions.