Pine Ridge Reservation

Sharing Lakota Heritage and History

Oct 2, 2014
SDPB Television

In a broadcast from Oglala Lakota College on the Pine Ridge Reservation, Wilmer Mesteth and Mike Her Many Horses joined Dakota Midday and discussed stories, songs and legendary leaders from Lakota history. Mike Her Many Horses is a tribal historian who is also executive director of the Oglala Sioux Tribe and a member of the Lakota Fund board of directors. Wilmer Mesteth is a spiritual leader, musician and instructor of Lakota Studies at OLC. He is a direct descendent of Chief Red Shirt, who fought in the Battle of the Little Bighorn.

University of South Dakota

Oglala Lakota College is one of the first tribally-controlled colleges in the country. It was first chartered in 1971 as the Lakota Higher Education Center. In 1983 the college was accredited as a four-year degree granting institution. The Pine Ridge Reservation institution is dedicated to rebuilding the Lakota Nation through education by teaching Lakota culture and language and preparing students to live and work in a multi-cultural world.

Bush Fellow Preserves Lakota Peacemaking Traditions

Aug 20, 2014
Bush Foundation

If you’ve spent much time listening to the news lately, you’ve heard plenty of stories about conflict. That includes the unrest in the Middle East, Africa, and not to mention Ferguson, Missouri. Richard Iron Cloud is a peacemaker who has spent years working on the Pine Ridge Reservation to improve the tribal justice system and keep alive traditional Lakota ways of resolving conflict. He's a 2014 Bush Fellowship winner. The 100-thousand dollar grant is awarded to community leaders.

A Conversation With Mark Tilsen

May 22, 2014

Mark Tilsen is co-founder of Native American Natural Foods, that company that makes the Tanka Bar.  The company is headquartered in Kyle on the Pine Ridge Reservation.  The company's vision includes staying on Pine Ridge to help create jobs and improve economic development.  This spring, Tilsen was invited to speak before a Congressional committee in Washington, D.C.  He discussed the challenges of creating business in Indian Country.  SDPB news producer Charles Michael Ray visited with Tilsen after he returned from the nation's capital.

Istinma / To Rest

May 1, 2014

Scott Means plays the role of the son in "istinma/to rest," a short film about a Lakota man who finds forgiveness for his father and reconciles with him while breaking the cycle of trauma in the family.  It's the first of a three-part trilogy set on the Pine Ridge Reservation.  Jesse Short Bull co-wrote and co-produced "istinma/to rest."  He's from Interior and a member of the Native Youth Leadership Alliance.  He discovered his passion to make films about the Lakota, Dakota and Nakota people while attending Oglala Lakota College.  Means and Short Bull discussed "istinma/to rest" which show

Lakota Federal Credit Union Grand Opening

May 3, 2013
Courtesy Lakota Federal Credit Union

The Lakota Federal Credit Union has its “official” opening today in the Pine Ridge Reservation village of Kyle. But the reservation’s first savings institution is already having a profound impact on the Lakota people.

Since opening its doors for business last Fall, 608 people have set-up accounts at the Lakota Federal Credit Union.

Spokesperson Tawney Brunsch says although it may be perceived as a contradiction in locations, a Credit Union is just what’s needed in a poor area like the Pine Ridge Reservation.

Trail Of Hope For Indian Housing

Apr 17, 2013
Photo by Jim Kent

Representatives of the Oglala Sioux tribe are in Washington, D.C. today on The Trail of Hope for Indian Housing. The 1500 mile journey saw a group of Lakota people haul portions of a dilapidated reservation home to the nation’s capital. Their goal is to bring attention to housing needs on the Pine Ridge Reservation and in other Native American communities across the state.Today we visit the village of Kyle to take a closer look at the realities of housing on the rez.

Activist Instruction Conference On Pine Ridge

Mar 7, 2013
Photos courtesy Deb White Plume

The Pine Ridge Reservation is the place to be this weekend for those wanting to learn how to be a frontline activist. An activist training conference is being held near the village of Manderson where participants will learn how to take direct action on environmental issues.

The three day conference is to teach people how to protest projects like the proposed Keystone XL Pipeline. Lakota activist Deb White Plume calls it “Moccasins on the Ground.”

Native American 40 Under 40 Recipient

Dec 20, 2012
Huffington Post

Nick Tilsen, co-founder and executive director of the Thunder Valley Community Development Corporation, was recently selected as one of the "Native American 40 Under 40" award recipients.  Thunder Valley Community Development Corporation is a culturally-based organization on the Pine Ridge Reservation.  Earlier this month, President Obama hailed Tilsen during the White House Tribal Nations summit as someone making great strides among Native Americans.

Youth Programs Preserving Lakota Culture

Dec 19, 2012

A service organization in Rapid City is working to make a difference in the lives of young people on South Dakota’s Pine Ridge reservation. Since its founding in 2005, ONE Spirit has branched out into several different programs aiding the Lakota people. In today’s Dakota Digest, SDPB’s Jilanne Doom focuses on an aspect of ONE Spirit dedicated to preserving their culture through creating youth programs on the reservation.

Lakota Voice Project/BEAR Program

Dec 12, 2012

The BEAR Project is a theater group at Pine Ridge that performs graphic and moving skits that work to reach youth.  The group is made up of a number of young suicide survivors.  The group has been performing as part of the Lakota Photo Project.  They'll perform in Rapid City at the Dahl Arts Center on Friday, December 14.  Jason Alley joined Dakota Midday to talk about the Lakota Voice Project and the BEAR Project.

Boarding School memories haunt Lakota man

Oct 8, 2012
Library of Congress

Before the award-winning documentary film “The Thick Dark Fog”and the book “They Called Me Uncivilized”, there were the Lakota man’s boarding school experiences that led to both stories. Today, Walter Littlemoon shares his memories of a childhood spent in a federally-imposed school system that he tells us did everything but educate.

Orange and yellow leaves paint the trees across land that’s been in Walter Littlemoon’s Lakota family for generations. It’s a quiet, peaceful place that reminds him of his childhood.