Native Minnesota Podcast

Join Rebecca Crooks-Stratton, Secretary/Treasurer of the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community and leader of the Understand Native Minnesota campaign, as she interviews thought leaders and change makers in Minnesota and across Indian Country. This powerful podcast celebrates Native culture, personalities and accomplishments while helping dispel common myths and misconceptions about Indigenous peoples.

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 Latest Episode

April 10, 2023 · 23 minutes 9 seconds

In this podcast episode, Rebecca is joined by Andy Vig, a Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community Member and the director of the tribe’s Cultural Center, Hoċokata Ti. They discuss how Hoċokata Ti and its public exhibit came to be, as well as Andy’s passion for Dakota language, art, and culture preservation and revitalization.

 Previous Episodes

March 2, 2023 ·

In this podcast episode, Rebecca travels to Prior Lake City Hall to meet with Mayor Kirt Briggs. The Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community and City of Prior Lake are neighboring governments that have worked together on several major projects over the years.

December 19, 2022 · 15 minutes 58 seconds

We have welcomed many fantastic guests since the podcast launched in 2021, including Sean Sherman of The Sioux Chef, Minnesota Lieutenant Governor Peggy Flanagan, Dr. Kate Beane, Crystal Echo Hawk, and many more. Each has a different area of expertise, but each uses their unique voice to shine a light on Native cultures and communities and advance issues important to Native peoples.

November 22, 2022 ·

In this special edition of the podcast, Rebecca interviews Native leaders from across the country at the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) annual convention. This episode features conversations with eight different tribal elected officials and staff members sharing the issues facing their tribe.

September 14, 2022 ·

In this podcast episode, Rebecca sits down with Minnesota author, speaker and educator Diane Wilson. In the conversation, Diane talks about using writing to explore cultural identity, the power of telling Native American stories and her latest novel, “The Seed Keeper.”

August 12, 2022 ·

On this episode, Rebecca is joined by Rosemma Lafferty, a member of the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community (SMSC) in Minnesota.

July 7, 2022 ·

We welcome Odia Wood-Krueger, the author and principal investigator of a new research report, “Restoring Our Place,” commissioned by the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community as part of its Understand Native Minnesota campaign.

May 25, 2022 ·

Native Americans were the first inhabitants of the lands now known as Minnesota. Yet when people talk about our state’s history and culture, Indigenous art and stories are often left out. Kate Beane, executive director of the Minnesota Museum of American Art, is working to change that.

April 21, 2022 · 56 minutes 5 seconds

In this episode, Rebecca welcomes Karen Diver, the senior advisor to the president for Native American Affairs at the University of Minnesota. Their conversation centers around the university’s history with tribal governments and how higher education institutions can rebuild trust with Indigenous peoples.

March 17, 2022 · 54 minutes 2 seconds

In this episode, Rebecca sits down with Dennis Olson, the commissioner of the Minnesota Office of Higher Education and member of the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa. In this conversation, Rebecca and Dennis talk about his early educational experiences, the achievement gaps between white and Native college…

February 9, 2022 · 45 minutes 16 seconds

In this podcast episode, Rebecca sits down with Minnesota Lt. Governor Peggy Flanagan, only the second Native American woman to be elected to statewide executive office in U.S. history. The conversation focuses on Native American representation, leadership – particularly among Native women – and the importance of understanding Minnesota’s history…

November 11, 2021 · 43 minutes 26 seconds

This episode features an interview with Sean Sherman, an award-winning Lakota chef and cookbook author based in the Twin Cities. Sean is the founder and CEO of The Sioux Chef, a company devoted to Indigenous foods, and co-founder of the nonprofit North American Traditional Indigenous Food Systems. In this conversation,…

October 1, 2021 · 14 minutes 26 seconds

This special video episode explores the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community’s exhibit at this year’s Minnesota State Fair. This was the first time a tribal government ever had a booth at the fair. The episode takes you behind the scenes for an up-close look at the exhibit and features interviews with…

August 5, 2021 · 1 hour 16 seconds

We welcome Ramona Kitto Stately to the podcast for a conversation about Native American education here in Minnesota. Ramona is the project director of We Are Still Here Minnesota and the chair of the Minnesota Indian Education Association. In this episode, we talk about the “Minnesota paradox” when it comes…

July 15, 2021 · 1 hour 12 minutes 4 seconds

In this episode, Rebecca sits down with Tadd Johnson to cover his varied career in law, government and higher education. Tadd currently serves as the senior director of American Indian Tribal Nations Relations at the University of Minnesota, director of the Tribal Sovereignty Institute and director of graduate studies in…

June 23, 2021 · 1 hour 5 minutes 24 seconds

The lack of Native representation – whether it’s in government, movies or sports – has allowed false narratives about Native Americans to spread. In this episode, Rebecca speaks with Crystal Echo Hawk of IllumiNative about her research on Native representation and how her organization is fighting against misconceptions and stereotypes…

May 4, 2021 · 51 minutes 14 seconds

In this first episode, Rebecca speaks with Wayne Ducheneaux, a member of the Cheyenne River Sioux nation in South Dakota and the executive director of the Native Governance Center. Wayne shares his background and how he was called to serving his tribe and Indian Country in his career. The conversation…