November is American Indian Heritage month. Fort Riley started celebrations Wednesday with dance presentations and keynote speakers.
"When we have our cultural observances it's to acknowledge the strengths of each diverse group of people while we learn the strengths of each group of people we are more combat ready because we understand each person and what they bring to the table. Native American and other soldiers can see (with the keynote speakers) where a soldier who was a civilian came from a reservation and has made it through the military ranks," says SFC Nicole Powell, coordinator from the equal opportunity office, Ft. Riley.
"Coming from a nation of poverty no income no jobs and then being able to come into the military and also be a warrior and be successful its parallel...its important for me for others to see that I might be a command sergeant major but I'm also a native and I have my traditions that I have grown with me and I would like to show it to them," says CSM Julia Kelley, 125th Brigade Support Battalion, 3rd Heavy Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division.
There are about 110 American Indian Soldiers serving at Fort Riley.