Vera Longtoe Sheehan (Founder, Contributor, and Educator) (Founder, Contributor, and Educator) is an scholar, educator, activist, and artist with almost 30 years of experience developing transformative education opportunities and curriculum materials, as well as being involved in education leadership for more than 10 years. She is currently the Director of the Vermont Abenaki Artists Association (2013 – present). Sheehan is also the Instructor for “Presenting Abenaki Culture in the Classroom” at Castleton University. Previously, she was a Museum Educator at the Smithsonian where she delivered culturally responsive programs for K-12 audiences. Vera is an Executive Board Member for the Vermont Humanities Council and on the ACT 1 Task Force (2019 – present) dedicated to ethnic and social equity studies. The focus of Vera’s art is in traditional clothing and twined woven plant fiber bags which require sustainable methodology.
Melody Walker (Contributor and Educator) is an Academic Advisor at American Public University and an Adjunct Professor at Northern Virginia Community College, former Adjunct Professor at Champlain College. She formerly taught the Abenakis and Their Neighbors and Abenaki Spirituality at Johnson State College. She served two terms on the Vermont Commission on Native American Affairs. Additionally, she is a traditional beadworker and finger weaver.
Francine Poitras Jones (Editor, Artist, and Educator) retired from a thirty-year career in marketing and copy editing to pursue a second career as a substitute elementary school teacher, which she did for five years, teaching grades K through 5th grade. She continues to present educational programs to elementary students, with her focus on Native American culture. Additionally, she is a painter who finds inspiration in her culture and everything around her. Francine s a beadworker and a craftsperson. She is also an Elder in the Nulhegan Abenaki Tribe.