Two weeks ago, about 45 Rapid City-area community leaders spent five days traveling by bus to culturally-significant sites within the boundaries of the 1868 Fort Laramie Treaty. The “Lakota Lands and Identities” bus trips were part of the Oceti Sakowin cultural ambassador program and led by Craig Howe, director of the Center for American Indian Research and Native Studies near Martin.
The goal of the Oceti Sakowin Ambassadors is to help develop stronger relationships between Native American and non-native members of the community. The program is supported by a $178,000 Bush Foundation Community Innovation Grant.
Karen Mortimer, president of the Rapid City Public School Foundation’s board of directors and director of the Oceti Sakowin Ambassadors, joined Dakota Midday along with participants Rapid City police chief Karl Jegeris and Vaughn Vargas, a South Dakota School of Mines and Technology student and member of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe.