First Person Radio-Weds, Sept 21@9:00AM: DOUG AND RACHEL LIMóN: Native Artists and Art Activists; TruthToTell Sept 19: TEACHERS AND TENURE: Achievement, Contracts, Certification - Listen Below

First Person Radio-Weds, Sept 21@9:00AM: DOUG AND RACHEL LIMóN: Native Artists and Art Activists

First Person Radio's Laura Waterman Wittstock with Andy Driscoll talks with husband and wife artists Doug and Rachel Limón. Their work has won awards all over the Upper Midwest Region. And their art has also become part of significant collections. Doug's recent cradleboard project to create four new cradleboards received matching funds needed to complete the project (one cradleboard shown below). Rachel's "Moondance" is hand-sculptured clay and paint of stingrays in the moonlight.


Doug Limón (Oneida/Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe) is on the Advisory Board of All My Relations Arts, Minneapolis, MN; a member of the Indian Arts and Crafts Association (IACA), Albuquerque, NM; listed in the Source Directory of Indian Arts and Crafts Board, Washington, DC; a member of the Turtle Foundation USA, Bellingham, WA; a member of the Southwest Association for Indian Arts (SWAIA), Santa Fe, NM; a member of the Ziibiwing Center, Mt. Pleasant, MI; a member of the Intertribal Agriculture Council, Billings, MT; a member of the American Indian Chamber of Commerce of New Mexico; a former board member of the Northside Arts Collective (NAC) in Minneapolis, MN; and former Chairman of the Minnesota American Indian Chamber of Commerce (MAICC).

The focus of Rachel Limón's work is on the beauty and intrigue of nature, either people, animals, plant or sea life. Rachel uses raku clay to express her inner creativity. She has explored a multitude of mediums such as photography, jewelry, watercolor and sumi-e painting as well. Many of her pieces are functional with the hope that nature and art can be enjoyed and cherished everyday. She is committed to community development through the arts.





TruthToTell Sept 19: TEACHERS AND TENURE: Achievement, Contracts, Certification - Listen HERE; Watch it HERE.

Watch us from Studio 5! TruthToTell is now seen on or in our Archives above.



Education in Minnesota seems ever in upheaval. Well, everywhere. Witness the assault on teaching and teachers by Tea Partiers over the last year or so, resulting in several states going after teacher pay, benefits and general rights. Major changes have been installed in the schools over the last year or two or more. Teachers, parents and administrators in all districts, especially, face renewed pressures to build in reliable systems for teacher accountability and, in core city systems in particular, aimed at significantly narrowing the well-known achievement gaps between students of color and their white counterparts, but also improving learning overall, what with recent math and reading scores hitting historic lows nationally.

Several perceived remedies have been passed by the State Legislature, including:

•  alternative licensing and certification of professionals outside the system to enter the classroom – with proper supervision (since teaching methods are themselves are part and parcel of the field);

• despite many doubts and failures, charter schools continue their increases in numbers as alternatives for parents concerned with system schools;

• private and nonprofit teachers corps, such as Teach for America have been introduced to Minnesota, permitting newly graduated semi-volunteers to enter our classrooms for a couple of years’ service, then depart.

• teacher tenure has come under fire, especially when teachers’ union contracts ensure seniority as the time-tested safety net for teachers, good and bad.

Minneapolis is in the midst of contract negotiations and some parents and activists are stepping up and insisting on historic shifts in how teachers are evaluated and whether contracts should use only seniority to release or retain teachers or base tenure on some combination of seniority and competence and other criteria. It’s possible Minneapolis will become the bellwether for contractual reform.

TTT’S ANDY DRISCOLL and MICHELLE ALIMORADI examine these issues with our guests this week.


REP. CARLOS MARIANI-ROSA – DFL Lead, Minnesota House Education Reform Committee, Member of Education Finance Committee and Executive Director, Minnesota Minority Education Partnership (MMEP)

MARY CECCONI – Executive Director, Parents United for Public Schools

LYNNELL MICKELSEN – Minneapolis Education Parent Activist; Blogger (Put Kids First Minneapolis); Editorialist and former Co-host, TruthToTell

LOUISE SUNDIN, President Emeritus and Lobbyist, Minneapolis Federation of Teachers; Trustee, Minnesota State Colleges and Universities; Executive Vice President of the Minneapolis Regional Labor Federation, AFL-CIO.