Must See! LaDonna Harris: Indian 101

Posted By Toyacoyah Brown September 22nd, 2014 Last Updated on: September 22nd, 2014


LaDonna Harris: Indian 101 is a feature documentary film about Comanche activist LaDonna Harris, who led an extensive life of Native political and social activism, and is now passing on her traditional cultural and leadership values to a new generation of emerging Indigenous leaders.

Comanche producer and director Julianna Brannum and executive producer Johnny Depp bring the story of politically influential Native American leader LaDonna Harris to Public Television stations nationwide with broadcasts beginning November 1. Take a look at the trailer below.

LaDonna Harris: Indian 101 Trailer (4 mins) from Julianna on Vimeo.

LaDonna Harris reshaped Indian Country both in America and abroad. She helped convince the Nixon administration to return sacred land to the Taos Pueblo Indians of New Mexico, founded the Americans for Indian Opportunity in 1970, and became a vice-presidential nominee in 1980.


LaDonna Harris: Indian 101 is a reflection of her political achievements, personal struggles, and the events that led her to becoming a voice for Native people. Raised on a farm in Oklahoma during the Great Depression, LaDonna did not attend college. However, she studied and learned alongside her husband, Fred Harris, who would become a U.S. Senator. Upon his taking office, she too undertook a public service role.


LaDonna is best known for her work in U.S. civil rights when she set the tone with a landmark legislation initiative that returned land to the Taos Pueblo Tribe and Native tribes of Alaska. She also served a pivotal role in helping the Menominee Tribe regain their federal recognition.

Her trailblazing efforts began when President Lyndon B. Johnson selected her to educate both the executive and legislative branches of U.S. government on the unique relationship that American Indian tribes hold within our nation. This education course was affectionately called “Indian 101” and was taught to members of Congress and other federal agencies for over 35 years.


Be sure to check your local PBS affiliates to see when this documentary will air. For more information please visit the film's website Indian 101.

Home » Native American Articles » Native American Culture » Must See! LaDonna Harris: Indian 101

About Toyacoyah Brown

Toyacoyah Brown is an enrolled member of the Comanche Nation, currently living in Chicago. She received her B.A. in Journalism from the University of Oklahoma and an M.A. in Media Studies from the University of Texas at Austin. When she's not scouring the Internet for fun things to share with PowWows.com readers you can find her digging for vinyl in her local record store or curling up with a good book.

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