An Arizona tribal leader is being honored by Phoenix's Heard Museum for his efforts to recover sacred tribal items from auction houses in France.

Hopi Chairman Herman G. Honanie is slated to receive the Spirit of the Heard Award during a November 19 banquet in Scottsdale, the museum said in a news release.

Honanie has worked for the Hopi Tribe since 1977 and has been its chairman since 2013. In that time, he's worked to recover ceremonial kachinas and other objects of religious and cultural importance from French auction houses, the Heard said.

Jim Huntwork, the Heard trustee who nominated Honanie for the honor, said Honanie's work "could set a crucially important legal precedent towards the protection of cultural and religious objects under international treaties and the rule of law."

The public is invited to attend the Heard's American Indian Excellence in Leadership Awards banquet, which is being held at the Scottsdale Plaza Resort. Tickets are $60 and can be purchased by calling 602-264-6768 or visiting