Honoring the Land

Long before California, Sonoma County, and Sonoma State University, the land around us was inhabited by indigenous peoples collectively known as the Coast Miwok and Southern Pomo. Now they are formally recognized as the Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria and chaired by Greg Sarris, who also holds the Graton Rancheria Endowed Chair at SSU.

Sonoma State acknowledge's in gratitude the Rancheria’s ancestors for their stewardship of the land and all of its resources, and thank the current membership for their partnership in a number of educational initiatives, including the Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria Learning Center at the Fairfield Osborn Preserve, located on Sonoma Mountain.

As Professor Sarris writes in his 2017 book How A Mountain Was Made, “It is said that Coyote was sitting atop Sonoma Mountain when he decided to create the world and people—but that is part of the big story of the Mountain..." We are now all part of the big story of the Mountain, and our stewardship of its resources, including our county and our university, is an ongoing, vital responsibility we recognize and gladly accept.

Learn more about our Native American Initiative at Sonoma State University.