A guitar player with a friendly smile, wearing a festive hat and a traditional serape shawl.
Oregon Culture Keepers Roster
About the Oregon Culture Keepers Roster

Search the online Oregon Culture Keepers Roster—an ever-expanding, juried selection of folk and traditional artists—and connect with cultural experts documented through our regional surveys and Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Program.

Rostered artists and culture keepers can provide educational presentations, hands-on demonstrations, or performances to a variety of audiences. We recommend a fee of at least $250 plus travel expenses unless otherwise noted, for such appearances. We do not serve as a booking agent, so please contact the artists directly.

Search the roster by county or keyword to find

  • highly skilled traditional artists for your classroom,
  • storytellers for your library event,
  • cultural experts for your humanities program,
  • performers for your festival stage, or
  • craft artists for demonstrations.

Check back often—we regularly add new folk and traditional artists!


Interested in applying to be on the roster?

First, review OFN’s definition of a Culture Keeper:

  • A Culture Keeper is a folk or traditional artist, who actively practices, passes on, and preserves the living cultural traditions of the cultural community to which they belong and is recognized by that community. Folk and traditional arts do not include folk-inspired art, which is produced by individuals and groups who are not part of the cultural community that originally produced/created/developed the art form, even if the quality of the art is excellent.

Second, fill out and send in the application form and all required work samples.

Or contact us at 541-346-3820 | ofn@uoregon.edu for assistance.

Found 252 profiles.
Roberta Kirk stands outside on grass. She is wearing black regalia with red, green, and blue beaded adornments as well as hoop earrings and sunglasses.
Tenino and Wasq’u Regalia Maker, Food Gatherer, Bead and Dentalium Work
H’Klumaiyat-Roberta Kirk (Warm Springs) is a traditional regalia maker and food gatherer who does traditional Wasq’u and Tenino bead and dentalium work and makes Plateau shell dresses as well as moccasins and more. She is a designated food gatherer for the Simnasho Longhouse in Warm Springs, runs sweats, serves as Archives and Museum Collections Manager for the Museum at Warm Springs, and has consulted for museums on Native American artifacts.
Jack Armstrong wears a plaid blue long sleeve shirt and a white cowboy hat.
Rawhide Braiding
Jack Armstrong (Lakeview) is a traditional rawhide braider particularly known for his bosal hackamores (bridles), mecates (reins), and riatas (lassoes). Dedicated to the work and lifestyle of the cowboy, he sells his finished pieces to other cowboys as well as to American and international collectors.
Jake Fallesen stands outside in front of a tree and wears a blue and white plaid shirt and green baseball cap.
Auctioneer, Sheep Farmer
Jake Fallesen (Crabtree) has raised sheep since 1958 and since the 1970s worked as an auctioneer throughout the Western US. Fallesen started the Scio Friday Night Auction, which became a monthly community event that features everything from retail goods to yard sale items, friendship, and fun.
James Akenson kneels while shooting a bow and arrow and wears a gray shirt, camouflage hat, and blue jeans.
Traditional Bow Hunting
James Akenson (Enterprise) is a traditional bowhunter. He uses his pack animals to reach the more remote hunting areas in the region, and prefers ground hunting for elk, mule deer, or whitetail deer. Akenson learned to hunt as a teenager, and works today as president of the national Professional Bowhunters Society to promote and preserve the traditional values of the wooden bow.
James Dionne stands outside and holds a brown feather creation and wears a blue shirt.
Native American Ritual Practices / Sweat Lodge Circle and Powwow Dancing
James Dionne (Ontario) is a Native American tradition keeper from Turtle Mountain Reservation in North Dakota. Dionne leads sweat lodges at his home and dances Pow-Wow with family and friends at community festivals.
James stands outside leaning against a wood chunk and wears a long sleeve blue shirt, gray baseball cap, and black pants.
Chainsaw Carving
James Lukinich (Willamina) is a chainsaw carver. Originally from Oregon, Lukinich taught himself to carve with a chainsaw while he was working as a logger in the Alaska wilderness. He spent most of his career as an arborist in California and Colorado. Now back home in Oregon, he carves professionally full-time.
James Nash and Paul Pagano pose outdoors next to a boat named "Dugbar Ranch"
Fly Fishing and River Guiding
James Nash and Paul Pagano (Enterprise) are friends who work closely with one another through 6 Ranch Fly Fishing and Winding Waters River Expeditions, two businesses that outfit trips on local rivers like the Snake, Grande Ronde, and Wallowa. As river guides, Nash and Pagano combine gifts for outdoorsmanship and teaching. They also carry on a rich culture of storytelling and humor related to river guiding that is a hallmark of the trade.
Jamie Wilson stands outside at her ranch in front of metal bars wearing a gray hoodie.
Leatherworking, Ranching
Jamie Wilson (Grass Valley) is a leather worker and rancher. Wilson got her first horse at age five, and learned to ranch from her father. After high school, Wilson attended saddlery school. Today, she typically works with leather during the winter months on the ranch. She makes chinks (half length chaps) chaps, horse tack, and other functional items.
Jamshid sits in a room with a wooden santur instrument. He wears a green sweater with a black abstract pattern on it.
Iranian Folk Music
Jamshid Fazel-Hamedani (Lake Oswego) is an Iranian (Persian) santur player. The santur, an Iranian/Persian dulcimer, is trapezoidal in shape. The player uses two mezrabs, delicate mallets, to strike the strings of the santur. Fazel-Hamedani most enjoys playing at home for holidays with family and friends.
Janet Komoto stands outside with her arms outstretched and plays a taiko drum. She wears a red, white, and blue robe.
Taiko Drumming
Janet Komoto (Ontario) is a Taiko drummer who started performing and teaching this Japanese percussion tradition in 2000. Many of her students are 4th and 5th generation Japanese-Americans.
Janie Tippett stands in a grassy field and rests her hands on a young brown cow. She wears a light green and white striped shirt and beige pants.
Writing, Cattle Ranching, and Foodways
Janie Tippett (Joseph) is a rancher, cook and community writer who attributes her good health to the traditional foods and food practices of Wallowa County ranchers. She hosts young farm interns and helps run a community food project. From the late 1970s to the early 2000s, Tippett wrote about local ranching traditions in a newspaper column.
Jardin Kaazar playing the conga drums
African American chef, Nurse, Storyteller, Musician
Jardin Kazaar (Coos Bay) is an African American chef, nurse, storyteller, and musician. His cooking has been inspired by his mother's as well as the French chefs he apprenticed with in NYC and France. A professional nurse, Kazaar loves to care for others, whether by healing them in a health care setting or by feeding them in his restaurant, The Black Market Gourmet.
Jayanthi Raman stands in an expressive dance pose against a white background. She wears a red, green, and gold silk sari and beaded ornamental headwear.
Bharatha Natyam Classical Indian Dance
Jayanthi Raman (Portland) has been a practitioner, teacher and choreographer of the classical Indian Bharatha Natyam dance for more than 4 decades. Bharatha Natyam has its roots in the 2nd century and is the most revered of classical dance styles in India. A 2015 Oregon Folklife Network Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Program Master Artist, Raman’s passion lies in teaching dance and continuing the traditions for future generations.
Jean Gordon sits at a dining table with floral embroidery work in front of her. She wears a navy blue fleece jacket over a pink polo shirt.
Quilting, Embroidery, and Applique
Jean Gordon (Aloha) is a third-generation quilter and embroiderer. A member of the Westside Quilters Guild and the Metropolitan Patchwork Society, Gordon is well known for the way she incorporates Red Work embroidery into her quilts.
Jeff Manthos stands in his workshop holding a violin. He wears a blue collared shirt and a red apron.
Jeff Manthos (Corvallis) is a luthier who builds exacting violins and violas. After attending the Violin Making School of America and apprenticing with in instrument repair with Thomas Metzler, Manthos began making his own instruments in 1991. He says that what makes his instruments unique is in the process—the builder's personality comes through.
Jeff Perin stands in his shop in Sisters, Oregon, and ties a fly. He wears a blue and white plaid collared shirt.
Fly Fishing Guiding
Jeff Perin (Sisters) is a fly fishing guide in Deschutes County and on destination trips around the world. Learning from his grandparents, Perin’s uncle introduced him to fly fishing, and he honed his skills as a teenager while working at a fly shop in the Bend area. Today, Perin’s Fly Fishers Place shop in Sisters is a crucial source of knowledge and camaraderie for area fly fishers.
Jefferson Greene stands in front of a house and holds two colorful baskets. He wears a black t-shirt that says "Powwow 2019" and a black hat with a decorated letter "A".
Hand Drums, Canoe Traditions, Beadwork, Basketry, Language
Jefferson Greene (Warm Springs) is a traditional artist and advocate for the Warm Springs native language. Greene began learning Warm Springs traditions as a child from his grandmother, Sasawaipum, who taught him to sing, dance, and tell traditional stories.
Indoor image of Panaderia Las Cuatas. There is a wooden cabinet and two metal racks full of pastries.
Mexican Foodways
Jesus Vasquez (Madras) is a master baker. Vasquez learned to be a baker from his grandfather and his father, who owned a bakery for 30 years in North Hollywood. Following the family tradition, Vazquez and his family opened their Mexican bakery, Panaderia Las Cuatas, in 2008.
Joan Blaser plays an accordion in front of a blue backdrop, a music stand, and a keyboard. She wears a traditional black and white lace floral dress.
Joan Blaser (Tillamook) is a traditional musician who can light up a dance floor with her accordion playing. Blaser is one of the original members of the Polkatones, a Northwest touring group that Albert Schwend, Jr. founded in 1971. Schwend, a Swiss immigrant, had a dream to start a polka band. Blaser's Swiss ancestors set out on foot from Salem to Tillamook with nothing but the clothes on their backs and their button accordions.
Joe Dabulskis stands indoors against a light brown wall. He wears a black crewneck sweater.
Joe Dabulskis (Wasco) is a taxidermist who taught himself the trade as a kid. After earning a taxidermy license in high school Dabulskis went on to teach the subject at Blue Mountain Community College. Dabulski is now passing on to his kids the same hunting, trapping and fishing knowledge that his dad taught him.