At CCC: Exploring how 'She Belongs'


Oakley Anderson-Moore (left) and Jihan Gearon share their experiences during the "She Belongs" event at CCC on March 27.



FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. - “Those of you who think you can’t make a change will not know if you can’t try,” said Harriet Young, board member of American Association of University Women. 


 Coconino Community College hosted an event called She Belongs, Celebrating Herstory, on March 27, 2019 during Women’s History Month. The event, attended by more than 60 people, welcomed the community to celebrate women with their stories and their accomplishments. 


At the event, Jacqueline Thompson performed with her beautiful voice and guitar. Jihan Gearon, Oakley Anderson-Moore, Hollie Vargas, and Harriet Young talked about who they are, what they do, and how they overcame their obstacles to be successful.


Jihan Gearon is from Fort Defiance. For many years Gearon was dedicated to helping her home at the Navajo Nation. 


“I believe we have to restore our culture with resources,” Gearon said.


Gearon did many projects for her home, such as installing a solar energy system at Forest Lake Chapter House, improving the Navajo wool market, and conducting food sovereignty and land restoration project impacts. Gearon also talked about patriarchy on the erasure of gender diversity. She also discussed how Dine women were treated and what they did to survive during the 1800s and 1900s. Finally, she told the audience about her health problem and how she mentally overcomes it. Gearon told us her mother and her nephew are the people who inspire her to do her best. 


Hollie Vargas and her therapy dog Fanta came and spoke about what they do in Flagstaff to help victims of crime. Vargas was a Sexual Violence Victim Advocate and involved with Victim Witness Services for Coconino County. Vargas spared the audience the dark stories her clients have experienced because she believed it would’ve made the audience sad. Instead, she talked about her therapy dog, Fanta. Fanta likes to comfort children and adults. If needed, Fanta gets to be in courtrooms if any victim needs her. Vargas also discussed and showed the audience a video about consent and what it means. She even wrote a children’s book about it titled Frances Asks. Tragically, Hollie Vargas passed away recently. We, at CCC, want to honor her memory and her tireless devotion to Victim Witness Services program. 


Oakley Anderson-Moore is a film director in Arizona. Her new film, called Brave New Wild, was shown at the Flagstaff Mountain Film Festival. The film was about the first-ever female ascent on El Capitan, an excerpt from 1973. Her film will be premiered on TV by the end of the year. Anderson-Moore discussed how women in the ‘70s and ‘80s believed women couldn’t do what men could do. Also, there was not many women to interview because not many women could rock climb during that time. Anderson-Moore talked about how a male director rejected working with her because at first, he didn’t know she was a woman. She had to motivate herself to keep going by working hard. 


Lastly, Harriet Young is a board member of AAUW (American Association of University Women) and has been involved since 1960s. She graduated from Vanderbilt with a B.A. in Political Science, and from Rice University with a Ph. D. in Congressional Electrons. Young has taught Political Science at Rice and NAU. Young has been living and speaking politics for 50 years. She informed the audience about women’s rights and the importance of voting. She also talked about the final barrier to equal rights its culture, power, and religion is the pull of history. 


“I try to convince people women are as good as men,” Young said.


- Alexa Russo 



Monday, 1st April 2019

All Dates

  • Monday, 1st April 2019