“There is a trap [in decolonization] that hinders a lot of potential growth. And that is centered in how we think about things. If you are only trained [to deconstruct] then you are stuck in a gear of deconstruction, which is important and useful. But if the goal is to increase capacity in Indian Country, then you are asking for builders, not destroyers, and that is a completely different type of thinking.” Ryan Red Corn
Ryan Red Corn
Ryan Red Corn
Ryan Red Corn (Osage) created the design firm Buffalo Nickel Creative and is also a member of the 1491s. He joined NextGen Native for a wide-ranging conversation.
Although we touched on comedy and had some light hearted moments, our conversation covered much more beyond comedy. We talked about the role his work and the work of others in graphic design and branding can play a role in Indian Country telling its stories better. We discussed how being creative and artistic is closely related to being an entrepreneur. Ryan shared how he uses different media to tell stories and how each is suited to have a certain impact. I dug into Ryan’s intentionality and how he uses it to manage his time and drive his art.
“I think it’s time we recognize there’s a change in our world and we need to make room for new voices in the great debate.”
Jim Gray is the former Principal Chief of the Osage Nation. Jim returned to NextGen Native for a conversation that I wanted to have since the day I started the podcast. Jim inspired the conversation with a “simple” Facebook post. When I read the post, I knew we had to connect again to dive into it.
So what was the post? It was only 25 words. “I think it’s time we recognize there’s a change in our world and we need to make room for new voices in the great debate.”
When I read that, Jim took me back to why I started the podcast initially: how do young people grow into leaders, gain experience, and share that experience. It’s not a simple question, and I struggled with ways to discuss it without sounding like a Young Turk.Continue reading →
Vince is from Oklahoma. He grew up in Norman-his parents moved there so him and his siblings could be close to more opportunities for education. Despite growing up in the town where theUniversity of Oklahomais located, he eventually attendedOklahoma State University.
Eventually, he ended up in New York as a lawyer. He worked for a big law firm where he focused on financial transactions involving transportation and logistics. It was a world he’d never been exposed to but he was drawn to it. He excelled in the environment and spent a lot of time working as a lawyer on these transactions.Continue reading →
Jim Gray is Osage. Not only is he Osage, he is the former Principal Chief. Jim is one of the few (so far) elected leaders to appear on NextGen Native.Jim served two terms as Principal Chief from 2002-2010. During that time, he led significant reforms to the Osage government, eliminating almost one hundred years of U.S. government say in who was an Osage.
I’ve shied away from interviewing elected leaders on NextGen Native. The reason is there are so many people serving or working in Indian Country that are not elected leaders that I thought they needed a spotlight of their own. However, I think Jim’s story as a former leader, in particular one who accomplished what he did as a young leader, is worth sharing his story.
It’s amazing to see how small events cascade and facilitate into life changing moments. Jim did not seriously consider college until he realized he could play tennis at the collegiate level. Sport is what pushed Jim into college and set him on his course.
Jim’s first job was with his tribe as a grant writer. Eventually he found a job in the newspaper business where he found the work suited him. He continued working for the Tahlequah Daily Press for about ten years. An opportunity arose to buy his own newspaper, the Native American Times. At the time, there were only a few papers in Indian Country that were not owned and published by tribes.The Times was able to cover all tribal issues in Oklahoma and across Indian Country with a unique viewpoint. Continue reading →