Mighty Man of Valor

SAIGE Award winner Robin Hairston

Geronimo. Victorio. Lozen. The list of Apache heroes looms large throughout Native American history. A contemporary Apache hero has won a great honor that will permit him to join the line of Apache Warriors with a tremendous achievement.

Robin Hairston is the winner of the SAIGE AWARD, the Society of American Indian Government Employees Meritorious Service Award that is given for exceptional service that is demonstrated by distinguished Native Federal Government Employees. 

Hairston is a Hero. A strong man of faith and prayer.  Twenty years of service in three branches of service, in the Marine Corps, Army and National Guard, demonstrate Hairston's devotion to the U.S. Military. For fifteen years, Hairston has displayed daily integrity, honor and strong character as an employee of Edwards Air Force Base. His stellar career as a Department of Defense civilian employee with the 412th Civil Engineer Squadron at Edwards Base melds his military service with the warrior tradition from his Apache heritage.

Following his Apache Ancestors' warrior traditions, Hairston has saved lives, protected others from harm and assured consistently high standards of safety, as a flightline sweeper and heavy equipment operator. Earning the respect of everyone around him at Edwards Air Force Base led to the nomination for the SAIGE Award, yet earning the respect of audiences for his Blue Mountain Tribe Band has led to a successful musical career as well.

Blue Mountain Tribe celebrates Native American culture with songs like "Oh Great Warrior and Red Man Blues, while remembering Veterans with songs like "Vietnam Veteran Blues". The Band educates audiences about Native American traditions, while raising money for charitable causes, honoring Veterans, supporting the Troops and providing entertaining, uplifting music. 

Formed in 2002, SAIGE is the first national non-profit organization representing American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) Federal, Tribal, State, and local government employees. SAIGE provides a forum on the issues, challenges, and opportunities of AI/ANs in the government workforce (including Tribal governments) and works to foster a professional network among AI/AN government employees," the organization explains.

"SAIGE is proud to host an outstanding week-long annual National Training Program focused on professional development, leadership and topics that are integral to the highly complex relationship known as the Federal Indian Trust Responsibility," states the organization,"As part of this program, SAIGE offers special training sessions for veterans, Youth, and in Federal Indian Law. Additionally, cultural events are presented by local Native people."  This dynamic organization continues to exert tremendous impact.

Native Americans make up about two percent of the total population, according to 2014 census results, and represent 1.7 percent of federal government employees. As a result,  the SAIGE Award honors career excellence, perseverance and persistence, which are truly embodied in winner, Robin Hairston.

To learn more about Robin Hairston and his band, BLUE MOUNTAIN TRIBE http://bluemountaintribe.com/