Excellence in Community Linguistics Award Holders


Brenda McKenna and Cora McKenna

Brenda McKenna and Dr. Cora McKenna are members of Nambé Pueblo in New Mexico who have made outstanding contributions towards the documentation and revitalization of their language, Nambé Tewa. These contributions include a dictionary and curriculum materials, language classes, community activities and resources, and team-building with Pueblo members and UNM linguists. Cora is a scholar who has demonstrated particular brilliance in linguistic analysis and teaching of her native Tewa. Brenda is a remarkably focused and energetic project leader. Together, they define collaborative community linguistics: their dedication to the revitalization of Tewa language and culture is a model and inspiration.

Previous years

2021 Chikari Tisso

2020 Mosyel Syelsaangthyel Khaling

2019 The Khumuno Wu'u Kotira Indigenous School Association (ASEKK)

2019 Nancy Richardson Steele, Karuk Tribe/Advocates for California Indigenous Language Survival

2018 Dehe Wang of the Ersu Tibetan language community (Sichuan Province, People's Republic of China)

2017 Bessie Ejai and Jessie Sampi of the Bardi language community of the Kimberley region of Northwestern Australia

2016 Valerie Switzler (Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs, Oregon)

2015 Muriel Fisher (Tucson Gaelic Institute)

2014 Mary Ann Metallic (Listuguj Education Directorate – Listuguj Mi'gmaq Government)

Excellence in Community Linguistics Award

First established in 2013, this award recognizes the outstanding contributions that members of language communities (typically outside the academic sphere of professional linguists) make for the benefit of their community’s language. The contributions made by awardees may be varied, including, among other things, documentation work with a linguist as a consultant and efforts towards language revitalization.

Frequency: Annually, as nominations warrant.

Next Nomination Deadline: September 15, 2023. 

Eligibility: Please refer to the official Call for Nominations for details regarding eligibility.