Gerard Sagassige: Recipient of the IHS Director’s Award for Pandemic Heroism

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Sault Tribe Health Division Extends Medical Services to New Boston Tribal Members Through Mobile Unit

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06.13.2024 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

Congratulations to Gerard Sagassige: Recipient of the IHS Director’s Award for Pandemic Heroism!

We are incredibly proud to announce that Gerard Sagassige, our esteemed Ojibwe Traditional Practitioner at the Sault Tribe Health Centre in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan, has been awarded the prestigious IHS Director’s Award for Pandemic Heroism.

Gerard Sagassige, whose spirit name is Shkaabaawis Sagassige Giizis, has been a beacon of health, wellness, and recovery long before his formal education began. Despite facing the challenges of foster care, Gerard found strength and guidance in the spirit values of his community, embracing the teachings of ceremony, plants, and animals.

Gerard draws profound inspiration from the legacies of previous Traditional Medicine Keepers, Adam Lucier and Harlan Downwind. His deep respect for their work and his commitment to honoring their legacy shine through in everything he does. Gerard values the trust placed in him by the entire Health team and finds joy in integrating traditional self-care and recovery practices into modern healthcare.

Gerard lives by the wisdom of making deliberate choices in the face of distractions: "Distraction priority makes something you love difficult and sometimes you got to make a choice." This philosophy guides him in his dedication to his work and community. Gerard has been a cherished member of the Sault Tribe Health Division for at least four years. His unwavering commitment and the unique blend of traditional and contemporary healing practices he brings to his role have made a significant impact on our community’s health and wellness.

Please join us in celebrating Gerard Sagassige for his exceptional contributions and well-deserved recognition. His dedication and spirit are an inspiration to us all. Thank you, Gerard, for your heroism and your invaluable service to our community!

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