Native American supporters to be honored

The Nevada Indian Commission will honor four Nevadans for their important contributions to the American Indian community during the fifth annual American Indian Achievement Awards Banquet and Silent Auction 5 p.m. Saturday at the Governor’s Mansion.

The banquet is the first statewide effort to recognize Nevadans who have positively influenced the lives of American Indians.

Carson City’s Ben Rupert, a firefighter with the City of Reno Fire Department, is being recognized as the Contributor and Supporter of the Year.

Members of the Nevada Indian Commission selected the recipients.

The awards celebrate “Nevadans working in and for Indian Country,” said Sherry Rupert, executive director of the Indian Commission.

Other recipients are:

American Indian Community Leader of the Year — Aletha Tom, chairwoman for the Moapa Band of Paiutes

American Indian Youth Services/Role Model of the Year — Paula Smith, Juvenile Probation Officer, Washoe Tribe of Nevada and California

American Indian Youth Ambassador of the Year — Calista Cruz, student, Coral Academy, Reno

Tickets are $55 or $500 per table of 10. For sponsorship and ticket information, go to


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