Tribe: Navajo

Etta and Randy Endito have been silversmithing together since 1980. Etta, from Crownpoint, and Randy, from Smith Lake, New Mexico met in 1978. They have been married for 36 years come August. They have three grown sons and one daughter in middle school. Etta say her greatest gift for 2013 is her granddaughter Sofiia, who is four months old now. She also has a grandson, Mikey, who is eight years old. She says, “I love them with all my heart, along with their mothers.” So far, all three sons show interest and talent in silversmithing following in the footsteps of their parents. The Endito family is a true team, loving and respectful of one another.

Etta and Randy both helped their mothers in their jewelry making after school. Both mothers were very good silversmiths. Etta has a piece of jewelry that her father made years ago, which she treasures. Etta and Randy have enormous of respect for their parents and are grateful for the lessons they learned.

Randy’s specialty is the shaping and stamping of the silver. Etta enjoys creating the designs and patterns. They come together in harmony, building a unique piece of jewelry. Etta says, “We are proud to be making jewelry. This is something we still make in America, by Americans. Buy Native American Made!” Etta worked 7 years as production manager with Deanna. She became the turquoise buyer with Deanna. She kept learning and getting to know miners and cutters. This year she bought all kinds of turquoise, Charoite, and Spiney Oyster with Kathy & Deanna. Deanna says she gives Etta full authority with the checkbook, because she knows what she is doing! “She has a gift for matching and picking winning rocks.”

“I’ve been working for Silver Sun for 21 years. I’ve learned a lot from Deanna. I will forever be thankful to her for teaching me a lot especially in the turquoise area. I know my turquoise mines now. She has also taught me a lot about the Native American Indian jewelry business. I can say that I’m very mellow and love meeting people. I get along with just about anyone. I have a lot of respect for other artists, God Bless Them. “ –Etta Endito.