The Elwha Warrior Program first started in 1978 with the crowning of King Raymond Charles, Queen Serena Barkley and Princess Arlene Wheeler when they were younger ladies. They represented the Tribe at the dedication of the Tribal Center. It wasn’t until 27 years later that new royalty was crowned.
In 2005, when the Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe hosted the Paddle to Elwha, Honoring our Ancestors, they were also honored by the crowning of new royalty.
Rena Barkley was crowned as the Queen, and her sister was crowned as the Princess.
Royalty is not a tradition of the Klallam People, but is used today as a form of leadership training.
On July 19, 2013 Patti Miller and Karrin Francis were crowned the Elwha Warrior Queen/Princess. Due to unforeseen circumstances Patti graciously and honorably stepped down as the Elwha Warrior Queen.
Since there was only one contestant for the Elwha Warrior Queen it was decided by the Elwha Warrior Program Coordinators that if Karrin was willing to accept she would step-up as the Queen. Karrin graciously accepted her new role. It was then decided that runner-up Sara Moore would serve as the Elwha Warrior Princess if she was willing to do so, which she was.
The ladies accepted their new roles at the end of November and at the Decemer Business Committee meeting it was proposed that the Elwha Warrior Program terms will be the date the treaty was signed. So, Karrin and Sara will crown the new Queen and Princess on January 26, 2014.