September 17, 2022 @ 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm America/Sitka Timezone
SJ Museum & Zoom
(907) 747-8981
Artist Talk with Debra Dzijúksuk O’Gara (Tlingit, Yupik, Irish) - “Tillie Paul Tamaree: Educator and Tribal Historian.” @ SJ Museum & Zoom

Artist Talk with Debra Dzijúksuk O’Gara (Tlingit, Yupik, Irish), in-person and on Zoom, simultaneously, Sheldon Jackson Museum

Sept. 17th from 3-4pm

  • ZOOM:
  • Meeting ID: 839 0863 3969
  • Passcode: 422241


As part of the Alaska Native Artist Residency Program, Debra Dzijuksuk O’Gara (Tlingit, Yup’ik Irish) will give a talk entitled “Tillie Paul Tamaree: Educator and Tribal Historian.” The talk will be held in-person at the Sheldon Jackson Museum and simultaneously on zoom on Sat., Sept. 17th from 3-4pm. People wishing to reserve a spot to attend in-person or who wish to be emailed a zoom link should call (907) 747-8981.

O’Gara describes the subject of her talk as follows:

“Matilda (Tillie) Kinnon Paul Tamaree, was raven from the Teeyhittaan clan of Wrangell. Tillie was my Great Grandmother. She was born in 1864 and died in 1955. Though I never met her in person, her spirit and life accomplishments have and continue to provide me with inspiration and guidance in my life. In her 91 years, Tillie was a teacher, translator, historian, and activist for native and civil rights.

Tillie spent many years in Sitka as well as a translator for the Reverend Sheldon Jackson, an early leader in the Presbyterian church, and created a Tlingit dictionary. Tillie is the mother to the Paul brothers — William, Sr., Louis and Samuel in her first marriage, and to Gladys, Frances (Skip), and Florence in her second marriage to William Tamaree of Wrangell. “

Debra Dzijúksuk O’Gara is Tlingit, Yup’ik, Irish and raven from the Teey hit taan clan of Wrangell. She is a ravenstail and Chilkat weaver and will be the artist-in-residence and working most days at the museum between Sept. 16th and Oct. 9th. She currently lives in Petersburg, Alaska. Her mom was born and raised in Mountain Village, Alaska and now lives in Juneau. Her grandmother, Frances Tamaree Sheppard was born in Wrangell and died young. Her great grandmother was Tillie Paul Tamaree, a civil rights activist and mother to William and Louis Paul. Tillie’s second husband and Dzijúksuk great grandfather, William Tamaree, was a community leader and carver.

Debra Dzijúksuk’s Chilkat and ravenstail teachers have been the late Clarissa Rizal, whose teacher was Jennie Thlunaut; Lily Hope, who is Clarissa’s daughter; and Kay Parker. It is through this weaving and the art of her ancestors that she has found sobriety and an ever-growing circle of strong women and other two-spirit weavers. They share stories, lessons, mistakes and victories. They connect with each other and reconnect with our ancestors. Debra and these weavers are rediscovering and reviving the knowledge and stories of our clans that are embedded in the fibers of our weavings.


(Photo provided by Debra Dzijúksuk O’Gara)