Harry Paul Cuero Jr.
American Indian Heritage Month: 2010 Honoree
Monday, October 18, 2010
Harry Paul Cuero Jr.’s role as a tribal activist began at the age of 19 as he became involved in many aspects of the governmental process including serving as treasurer of the Campo Band of Kumeyaay Nation, becoming its cultural director in 2001, and in 2004, becoming the chairman and serving for four years. He is currently a member of Campo’s Executive Committee.
Cuero is a successful cultural and tribal leader and is recognized locally and nationally as an advocate, not only for his tribe, but for all the tribes of Southern California as well as for indigenous peoples everywhere. His advocacy extends to local schools where he works with teachers and administrators to help get Indian students a fair shake in education.
As the cultural director of his tribe from 2001-2004, Cuero worked with tribal youth, teaching them to sing and dance and inviting them to participate in tribal ceremonies.
As a traditional Bird Singer for more than 30 years, Cuero and a group of Kumeyaay youth performed cultural Birdsongs with the San Diego Symphony; he was also chosen to open the pre-game ceremony with Bird Songs at the 1998 Super Bowl in San Diego and performed at the opening of the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian. Plus, he and other Bird Singers were invited by President Clinton to sing at the White House.
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