Rose Rees Peace award presented to Edina High School senior
May 15, 2019 - Edina High School (EHS) senior Andrea Richardson received the 2019 Rose Rees Peace Award from the National Council of Jewish Women – Minnesota (NCJW) at a ceremony on May 1. Given to 25 students from local high schools each year, the award honors “exceptional high school seniors who have demonstrated a commitment to service, advocacy, community and peace.”
The theme for 2019 was "Navigating Identity at the Intersections.” Andrea is a Native American woman from the Leech Lake Reservation, who moved to Edina three years ago from Grand Rapids. She hoped that Edina would have a Native American student group like the one she belonged to in Grand Rapids, but when she found out that there was not, she started the first Native American Club at EHS. This club features cultural, academic and historical activities of the Ojibwe and Dakota.
Andrea has led as president of the club and helped grow the group from five to 15 students due to her efforts to increase visibility. She also represented the native student body on the EHS Mosaic Club, was a leader in a group for the Indigenous People's Day parade, and took part in a Native American Civil Rights Tour in Arizona with WMEP. Last spring, she participated in the Dave Larsen Cultural Immersion Tour, which won the MN Environmental Initiatives Award. Andrea presented on behalf of EHS for this award. Last November, Andrea once again represented EHS at an indigenous educators’ conference in New Zealand where she was a student presenter.
The Peace award commemorates Rose Rees, who was a past president of the NCJW-Greater Minneapolis Section, and founded the World Affairs Council of Minneapolis. Her passion for world peace was a guiding principal of the council’s work.