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2006 - Tribal Government Program - Iowa Tribe of Oklahoma, Perkins

The bald eagle is not only a symbol of the United States, it also is a sacred icon, along with the buffalo, to the Iowa tribe which has fewer than 500 members in Oklahoma.  It is of special significance then that an eagle rehabilitation aviary was opened last January by the Iowa in the middle of a bison range south of Perkins.

Built with the help of a federal wildlife grant, the first tribally-run eagle rehabilitation facility anywhere released its first eagle just 10 months after ground was broken.  Victor Roubidoux [“ROO-buh-doo”], the tribe’s wildlife manager and visionary of the project, already has laid the groundwork for other tribes to replicate what the Iowa have done.

The Grey Snow Eagle House, as the facility is called, clearly impressed our judges.  They called it a magnificent accomplishment and noted that it would have a lasting impact not only on wildlife, but also on public education and Native American cultures. 

Victor Roubidoux and the Iowa tribe, your excellence in turning a soaring vision into such an impressive reality is an inspiration to all populations of Oklahoma, and tonight we salute you!