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Our Instructors

Every year DLSI brings together an awesome group of instructors from across Standing Rock and beyond.

Allen Wilson

Allen Wilson

Allen Wilson is from Rosebud Reservation. He has a Bachelor of Science in Education and teaches Lakota language, history and culture at Todd County Middle School, and before that, at St Joseph’s Indian School.

Together with Ben Black Bear Jr., he regularly facilitates language meetings at Siŋté Glešká University. He grew up hearing Lakota around the rez and began studying more intently in 2012.

Armik Mirzayan

Armik Mirzayan

Armik Mirzayan is a Visiting Assistant Professor at the University of Virginia and Assistant Professor of Modern Languages and Linguistics at University of South Dakota, where he teaches Lakota.

He earned his PhD in Linguistics from the University of Colorado at Boulder in 2010. His research interests include phonology, acoustic phonetics, and language documentation.

Denny Gayton

Denny Gayton

Denny Gayton is a well-known Lakota language instructor with Master's degrees in archaeology, physics, and resource management. Praise from his former students speaks to the quality of his classes:

“I learned more in that one semester than I’ve learned through my whole time I was in school.” Dominica Medicine Horse

“Denny uses native humor to teach the language in a natural, fun energetic way. He will have you speaking and laughing right away.” Former student 

Elliot Bannister

Elliot Bannister

Elliot Bannister has been learning D/Lakota for around a decade. They live at Standing Rock and work for the Tribe's Language and Culture Institute.

They have taught a number of language classes at Sitting Bull College, where they're currently pursuing a Master's in Education.

Kim Campbell

Kimberlee Campbell

Kim Campbell has taught language pedagogy courses at Sitting Bull College for several summers. She earned her PhD at New York University.

During her career at the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures at Harvard, she built up experience of creating lessons in a variety of world languages including Ojibwe, Hebrew, and Celtic. She is co-author of Lakȟótiya Wóglaka Po!, a Lakota textbook series.

Nacole Walker

Nacole Walker

Nacole Walker is Director of the Language and Culture Institute at the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe. She has taught many year-round courses in language, linguistics, and teaching methods at Sitting Bull College.

She studied Linguistics at Dartmouth College and has been learning her language for nearly a decade. She has also studied German and Māori.

Tasha Hauff

Tasha Hauff

Tasha Hauff is a Mnikȟowozu Lakȟota scholar, teacher, and language activist. She earned her Ph.D. at the University of Califonia, Berkeley with a dissertation entitled: “Lakȟótiyapi kiŋ uŋglúkinipi (We Revitalize our Lakota Language): Native Language Revitalization at Standing Rock."

She is  currently a University of California President's Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Education at the University of California, Los Angeles.

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