Cindy was born several years after the store opened, and early in life was raised with Diné nannies whose husbands were silversmiths in the store. Growing up, she also worked in store, helping people try on moccasins and pick out turquoise jewelry.
Cindy attended Stephens College and graduated from the University of California in Santa Barbara with a degree in History, studying the American West and revisionist history, writing her thesis about the "Meadow Mountain Massacre"
After graduation, Cindy worked in Washington DC, and later, drawing upon her family history, began her museum career, working with Native art collections at the Denver Art Museum (pictured), Gilcrease Museum, and the Five Civilized Tribes Museum.
After 25 years in museums, Cindy shifted in the industry to become a credentialed art appraiser, and changed the family business to Native American Art Appraisals, Inc. She was an accredited member of the International Society of Appraisers for 20 years, working with hundreds of collections, before retiring in 2019.
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