Location: Cloquet, Minnesota
2012 Community Spirit Award Honoree
A life-long resident of Fond du Lac Reservation, Elizabeth has been a professional musician since 1990, composing string quartets, blues songs, hand drum songs, children’s musical theater and basic folk as well as recording and teaching. Because of her actions, her community is rediscovering themselves through song and reinforcing community ties.
She teaches music, American Indian studies classes, coordinates a language and culture resource center at the tribal college in Fond du Lac, and volunteers with the Anishinaabe Youth Chorus and Oshkii Giizhik Singers.
Jaakola says, “I see this reinvigoration of singing traditions tightening up our relationships while also encouraging us to turn our attentions back to the language, our traditional ways, and many other aspects of being Anishinaabe. In my work, I encourage our people to find their voice, the voice that they ad used freely as a child, and nurture its use.”