Photo essay: How a decade-old foundation helped shape Cherokee

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Lori Reed, left, and Karen George, right demonstrate finger weaving techniques at the Oconaluftee Indian Village in Cherokee, N.C., on Wednesday, June 27. The Cherokee Preservation Foundation gives grants to the village as part of its cultural preservation efforts. Mike Belleme/Carolina Public Press

On its 10th anniversary, the Cherokee Preservation Foundation is facing change.

It’s longtime director, Susan Jenkins, plans to retire by the end of the year. And a newly signed compact between the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Indians and the state of North Carolina could mean the foundation’s annual coffers will now have about $7.5 million a year to reinvest in the Qualla Boundary and seven Western North Carolina counties — Cherokee, Clay, Graham, Haywood, Jackson, Macon and Swain.

This is one view of what the foundation has done since it rose to prominence 10 years ago — and a signal of where it may go in the decades to come.

And for more, read our story about how, at its anniversary and with a new compact, this regional foundation prepares for change.

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About the Author

Mike Belleme

Mike Belleme is a contributing photographer for Carolina Public Press. Contact him at mike@mikebelleme.com.

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