Bob Lomadafkie, the late Hopi elder who spent the past decade improving the learning experience for NAU’s Native American students, will be honored at 5:30 p.m., Wednesday, Oct. 7, at the Native American Cultural Center.
Lomadafkie, who died in May, was one of NAU’s first traditional knowledge scholars and served as a Native American community liaison, advocate and mentor.
“In addition to being a cultural conduit for Native American students throughout campus, he spent many hours in the classroom sharing his traditional knowledge with students from many backgrounds, providing insights difficult to glean from a standard university curriculum,” said Chad Hamill, associate professor and Applied Indigenous Studies chair.
Lomadafkie graduated from NAU in 1972 with a bachelor of fine arts degree and was often invited as a guest lecturer at colleges across the country. For more than 40 years, he was active in northern Arizona, promoting Native American programs and social issues.
“He was at the forefront of establishing the Native American Community Action organization, providing much needed advocacy, social services and health needs in Flagstaff,” said Octaviana Trujillo, professor and founding member of NAU’s Applied Indigenous Studies Department.
“Bob was very popular because he was very enthusiastic and had a wealth of knowledge about the Hopi, certainly, and about current events,” Trujillo said. “He cared a lot about Native American community health and creating a strong sense of identity.”