We are thrilled to announce that three new respected elders have joined our Advisory Council! Richard Moves Camp, Verola Spider, and Joseph Marshall, III.
(Photo: Amanda War Bonnett)
Richard Moves Camp is a fifth-generation Lakota healer, elder, tribal historian, and spiritual leader. He is the great, great grandson of Wóptuȟ’a (“Chips”), the wičháša wakȟáŋ (“holy man”) who provided Tȟašúŋke Witkó (“Crazy Horse”) with war medicines of protection. A tribal authority on Lakota history, culture, and religion based on five generations of ancestral family memory and a living oral tradition dating back to the pre-reservation period, Mr. Moves Camp and his family have been pivotal in the preservation and revitalization of Lakota religion and spirituality throughout the twentieth century. A well-known and highly respected elder, Mr. Moves Camp holds a Master’s degree in Mental Health Counseling with an emphasis in Behavioral Health from Sinte Gleska University.
Richard is the Executive Director of Wicahpi Koyaka Tiospaye, a non-profit organization that focuses on preserving the traditional knowledge and cultural traditions of the Lakota people to provide a pathway to wellness. Their purpose is to preserve, maintain, and pass on traditional teachings for future generations.
Richard was a key contributor to the Wakanyeja Pawicayapi (“Children First”) organization and co-authored a book on Lakota Healing with fellow spiritual leader Richard Two Dogs. Richard served as a counselor at the Crazy Horse school in Wanblee, and was one of the founding members of the Lakota Waldorf school. He teaches at Sinte Gleska University and lectures widely on Lakota history, culture, and traditions.
Verola Spider was born and raised in Porcupine, South Dakota. Growing up in a traditional family, Verola never spoke a word of English until the age of six. She was raised in the traditional ways in a log cabin with no electricity or running water, and traveled by horse and wagon. She is a sixth generation oral storyteller and the first female in her family lineage to hold that honor.
Verola is a master quill worker and has carried on and passed down the ancient art form of quillwork to current generations for decades. As a multi-faceted traditional artist, she has produced award-winning creations in quillwork, beading, moccasins, cradleboards, and star quilts.
As a Lakota language arts and culture teacher at Oglala Lakota College for over two decades, she has passed on traditional language and knowledge to countless students. She is the matriarch of a large family which includes 10 kids, 27 grandchildren, and 7 great-grandchildren.
Joseph Marshall III is an acclaimed Lakota author, teacher, artist, and historian. Joseph was born on the Rosebud Indian reservation in SD. Raised in a traditional household, his first language was Lakota and he was trained in the ancient tradition of oral storytelling. He is one of the founding members of Sinte Gleska University and has spent years teaching university and high school students. He has developed curricula in Lakota Language and Native American Studies and developed a leadership seminar based on the leadership lessons of Crazy Horse.
Joseph is most well known as an award-winning writer. He has published fourteen nonfiction works, three novels, a collection of short stories and essays, two children’s books, several screenplays, and was a contributing author in five other publications. His work has been translated into numerous foreign languages and he has traveled across the U.S. and abroad as a speaker and lecturer.
Joseph has worked in the film and television industry both as an actor and narrator. He has also worked behind the scenes as a consultant and technical advisor, and is a Fellow in the Sundance Institute. Joseph is also a practitioner of primitive Lakota archery, having learned from his maternal grandfather the art of hand-crafting bows and arrows, and is a specialist in wilderness survival.
Saunie Wilson Rick Gray Grass Yvonne “Tiny” DeCory
Along with our current advisors Rick Gray Grass, Saunie Wilson, and Yvonne “Tiny” DeCory – we are grateful for the wisdom and experience provided by our new advisors. Their individual and collective strengths, talents, and insights are priceless and their life-long commitment to the revitalization of Lakota culture and identity help provide positive and uplifting inspiration for the Lakota youth and the Mitakuye Foundation.