Chenena James Roach
1928 - 2008
Chenena James Roach was inducted into the hall of fame for her dedication to promoting and preserving the history, culture and heritage of the Chickasaw Nation and its people.
Mrs. Roach and her brother, Overton James, former governor of the Chickasaw Nation, convinced their mother, Vinnie May Humes, and their stepfather, Reverend Jesse Humes, to provide a written translation of the Chickasaw language. This resulted in the first Chickasaw Dictionary, published in 1973.
Along with that dictionary, Mrs. Roach recovered audio tapes of her mother, Mrs. Humes, pronouncing more than 700 Chickasaw words. Those recordings have been compiled on a CD-Rom "Talking Chickasaw Dictionary," which allows the user to hear the correct pronunciation of each word.