Andy is a member of the Skokomish (Twana) Nation. He was born in Shelton, Washington in 1955. He has lived in the Skokomish community all of his life. At the age of twelve, he became aware of his culture. It was then that he learned to make baskets and to gather basket materials with Skokomish elders Louisa Pulsifer and Emily Miller. After some experimentation in different mediums he became inspired to try carving after a tour he took at the Capital Museum in Olympia, Washington.
There were nine Twana communities, the largest being known as the Skokomish, or "big river people." The Twana subsisted on hunting, fishing and gathering activities, practicing a nomadic life-style during warmer weather and resettling at permanent sites during the winter. Twana descendants live on the Skokomish Reservation, and all have become known as the Skokomish Tribe.