In 2009 Washoe Tribal Members Established Washiw Zulshish Goom Tahn-Nu (Washoe Warrior Society, WZGT)

We are an organization of the people, by the people.

Washiw Zulshish Goom Tahn-Nu received status as a 501(C)(3) in 2020 and has since this time worked to become a viable non-profit organization operating under a 5-member Board of Directors with an Executive Director; an Organization Charter; Organization Bylaws, and accountability and accounting Systems.


To live on Washoe lands as Washoe people with a unique language and culture that integrates the values and spiritual understandings of our ancestors as viable paradigms in promotion of traditional/ancient wisdom practices for living that brings healing to the land, the water and the people for generations to come.


WZGT is committed to create, promote, and mentor leadership and healthy lifestyles for the Washoe people.  We are committed to restore in our youth the sense of uniqueness of their tribal heritage, language, and culture so that they will walk tall and proud as they apply the time-honored values of their ancestor to the decisions, they make about how to walk in this world today.  We are committed to instill respect for the land, the water and the animals who dwell on the land.  Our land contains our history, our legends, our cultural sites and the wild plants and animals that once fed us.  The land contains our medicine as well as our traditional food.  Native People have always protected and preserved their land and water (WZGT Board of Directors, 2020)


Treat all life with respect.
All life is equal.
Take only what you need.
Live in harmony and balance.
Share with family and community.
Be ethical.
Always act with honor.
Learn from your mistakes.
Honor the elders, their knowledge, wisdom, and experiences.
Honor the warrior.
Protect the children, protect them from harm and teach them the values and support them to gain the tools (education/vocational skills, etc.) necessary to become responsible citizens.
Remember your history and ancestors, their decisions allowed you to be here today.
Respect the mysteries-there are some things you won’t know in this life–don’t let the mysteries keep you from moving on while honoring & respecting life on Mother Earth.

Meet our Board of Directors

Frank Grayshield

WZGT President

Frank is the son of Doggie George Holmes (1917-1973) and Louise Jackson (1918–2016). He served in the US Navy from 1959 to 1962. He has bachelor’s degree in psychology and a minor in sociology. He has a master’s degree in policy, planning and regulation from the University of California, Berkeley. Grayshield has served as a counselor in public schools for Native Students. He served as a public health educator/consultant for Indian Health Service. He additonally served as a public health advisor with the National Institute of Health. Currently he serves his local community as the president of WZGT and as an activist for Native and Indigenous land rights. He is a founding member of WZGT.

Melba Rakow

WZGT Vice President
Melba Rakow is the daughter of Raymond Fillmore and Mable Washoe. After thirty-four years, and she returned to teaching Washiw with others who had been a part of the immersion school in the 1990’s. She became involved with the Head Start immersion class and began to interpret books, songs, and curriculum for the program. She will be continuing this process and is hopeful that she and the immersion program will have created strong speakers. She is a fluent Washiw language speaker and tribal wisdom keeper. Melba is a founding member of WZGT.

Aspen Carrillo

Youth Representative

Aspen is the granddaughter of Ruby Carrillo. In Spring 2023, she earned her Associate of Arts degree from Western Nevada College. Aspen has aspirations to pursue her Bachelor’s Degree at the University of Nevada Reno focusing on art, sustainability and science. She has been an active community member all of her life, participating in cultural events and community art projects, sharing her artistic talents with graphic design, mural art, oil painting and more. She has a passionate desire to give back to her community revitalizing Washoe language and culture. Aspen has served on the WZGT Board of Directors since 2020 as Youth Representative.