Arizona Indian Living Treasures Awards

To Honor the Cultures of Arizona Native American Tribes

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Jones Benally


Jones Benally was born in a traditional hogan on the Navajo Nation at Black Mesa, Arizona. His grandparents and parents began teaching him traditional dances, ceremonies and the many uses of plants and herbs when he was seven years old. A historian of Navajo culture, Mr. Benally was the first Medicine Man employed as a Traditional Consultant at the Winslow Indian Health Care Center. He is a world champion Hoop Dancer and toured the world for over fifty years sharing his culture.

Mr. Benally is also an accomplished silversmith, trick roper, artist, dancer, actor, musician and storyteller. He has many movie and television credits and his work is included in the collections of the Smithsonian Institute. Additional accomplishments include singing, performing and recording with the internationally renowned and award winning rock groups Sihasin and Blackfire.

The 2014 AILTA Event to honor Mr. Benally was on Sunday, November 16, 2014 at the Heard Museum, Phoenix, Arizona

Cultural Preservationist

Previous AILTA Recipients

Jean Sahmie
Craft: Potter
Tribe: Hopi, Tewa
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