Staff
Julie Garreau

Julie Garreau

Executive Director Read More
Julie Garreau

Julie Garreau

Executive Director

Julie Garreau is a member of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe and executive director of the Cheyenne River Youth Project, an organization she founded in 1988 to meet the needs of Lakota youth and families on South Dakota’s Cheyenne River reservation. Julie stewarded CRYP through its development from a one-room youth center to a comprehensive youth and family services campus that includes “The Main” youth center for ages 4-12, Ċokata Wiċoni  (Center of Life) teen center for ages 13-18, 5-acre Waniyetu Wowapi (Winter Count) Art Park, Waniyetu Wowapi Lakota Youth Arts & Culture Institute, 2.5-acre Winyan Toka Win (Leading Lady) Garden, Keya (Turtle) Café & Coffee Shop, Keya Gift Shop, and seasonal Leading Lady Farmers Market and Turtle Island Food Truck. A dedicated youth advocate, Julie has created a successful model for other Native communities as they develop effective, sustainable youth programming.

In more than three decades with CRYP, Julie has received the South Dakota Volunteer of the Year Award (1992); Presidential Points of Light Award (1993), presented by President George H.W. Bush; Lakota Nation Invitational Tournament Public Service Award (1993); Father Hogebach Service to Native American Children Award (1995); North American Indian Women’s Association Fellowship “Among All Peoples” Award (1999); Garden Supply Company’s First Place “Garden Crusader” Award (2005); and Spirit of Dakota Award (2009).

In 2002, the South Dakota Coalition for Children named CRYP a “Champion for Children,” and Julie was named to an honor roll that recognized outstanding dedication to South Dakota’s children. Her name appears on the Honor Wall at the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington D.C.

In 2011, Julie was appointed to the South Dakota Commission for National and Community Service. She was chosen to be a Bush Foundation Native Nations Rebuilders Fellow in 2012, and she received a Bush Fellowship in 2016. Under her leadership, CRYP won a Bush Prize for Innovation.

Julie is a founding member of the Native American Food Sovereignty Alliance and currently serves as its president. In 2014, her vision for a public art space for youth was realized with the opening of the Waniyetu Wowapi Art Park, the home of CRYP’s award-winning RedCan invitational graffiti jam, now in its 6th year, and an innovative arts internship program and Lakota Arts Fellowship program for teens. RedCan received the Americans for the Arts’ Robert E. Gard Award in 2017 and was selected for its 2019 PAN Year in Review. Also in 2019, Julie received the Americans for the Arts’ Arts Education Award, which is a testament to the significant learning that takes place at CRYP’s Waniyetu Wowapi Lakota Youth Arts & Culture Institute, which officially opened in 2018. Julie also received the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development’s Tim Wapato Public Advocate of the Year award in 2019. Julie is on the board of Arts South Dakota, stewards CRYP’s inclusion in the Bush Foundation’s 2nd Community Creativity Cohort, and is a member of the South Dakota Attorney General’s Indian Advisory Council.

Dawn E. LeBeau

Dawn E. LeBeau

Deputy Director Read More
Dawn E. LeBeau

Dawn E. LeBeau

Deputy Director

Dawn E. “Dawnee” LeBeau is Itazipacola Oo’henunpa of the Tetonwan Lakota Oyate. She currently resides on the Cheyenne River Lakota Reservation in South Dakota with her two beautiful wakanyeja, Ashten and Anjali.

Dawnee loves visual storytelling, gardening, and indigenous plants; and her work supports the amplification of indigenous Lakota wellness, Lakota language, and cultural values.

Dawnee holds a Bachelors of Arts degree in social science. She has served as a fellow with the First Peoples Fund for the Artist in Business Leadership and Cultural Capital Fellowships; she is a 2019-2020 cohort member with the South Dakota Change Network; and she is a 2020 cohort member with the Creative Community Leadership Institute. Dawnee also is a mentee with the Seed Seva Mentorship and the Native Food and Culinary Mentorship.

Jerica Widow-Rivers

Jerica Widow-Rivers

Youth Programs Director Read More
Jerica Widow-Rivers

Jerica Widow-Rivers

Youth Programs Director

A member of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe, Jerica was born and raised on the reservation. Upon her 2007 graduation from Takini High School, she began taking courses in Early Childhood Education at Oglala Lakota College. She began working with the youth in 2009, through Department of Social Services and Child Protection Service centers within the community. Through the daily challenges in her role there, she enjoyed helping the youth the reservation. Jerica began working as a Youth Programs Assistant at the Cheyenne River Youth Project in 2014; she quickly was promoted to Youth Programs Coordinator, and in 2018, she became CRYP’s Youth Programs Director. Because she has many younger siblings and relatives, she feels that she has a good understanding of the needs and interest of youth. Jerica hopes to bring her passion and experience to her role at CRYP, serving as a positive role model for children and teens.

Michelle DuBray

Michelle DuBray

Development Associate Read More
Michelle DuBray

Michelle DuBray

Development Associate

Michelle C. Fredericks DuBray makes her home on a buffalo ranch along the Missouri River on the Cheyenne River Sioux Reservation. An enrolled member of the Mandan Hidatsa Arikara Nation of North Dakota, Michelle works with nonprofits and in community development through her business, Pinto Horse Woman Consulting. She has worked as a consultant with the Cheyenne River Youth Project in various capacities for the past 10 years.

Born in Fort Yates, North Dakota, on the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation, Michelle was raised in Boulder, Colorado. After attending Boston University, she transferred to the University of Colorado at Boulder, where she graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in international relations. Michelle attended law school at the UCLA for 1.5 years before pursuing nonprofit work in Colorado. Then, in 1993, Michelle returned to the Dakotas, where she helped establish the InterTribal Bison Cooperative, serving first as administrative director and then as development director. In 1994, Michelle was recognized as a Kellogg Fellow for her participation in the Americans for Indian Opportunity Ambassadors Program.

Michelle has more than 34 years of experience working in nonprofit management and development, working with Native nonprofit organizations as they build Native communities, develop partnerships, forge collaborative efforts, and encourage sustainability of rural communities. She has worked locally for Native American Advocacy Program and the South Dakota Indian Business Alliance, regionally for Rural Dynamics' Northern Plains Initiative, and nationally for the InterTribal Bison Cooperative, Native American Fish & Wildlife Society, California Indian Legal Services, and Native American Rights Fund.

Michelle was selected for the first cohort of the Bush Foundation’s Native Nations Rebuilders Program in 2010, and she served on the Native Youth Leadership Alliance Board of Directors as secretary in 2009-2016. Previously, she served on the Cheyenne River Youth Project Board of Directors in 2009, and the Leadership Council of SDIBA in 2009-2013; and in 2011, she was appointed to the Commission of National and Community Service for the State of South Dakota by Gov. Daugaard.

Crystal Lind

Crystal Lind

Finance Manager Read More
Crystal Lind

Crystal Lind

Finance Manager

As finance manager, Crystal is responsible for managing all of CRYP’s grants and tracking the organization’s spending. Her professional career has given her a critical skill set, including accounting, bookkeeping and payroll, and she brings tremendous value to the CRYP team.

Crystal holds an associate’s degree in accounting from Western Dakota Technical Institute, and she’s currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree in human resources from DeVry University. She will complete this degree program in March 2018.

Heather Steinberger

Heather Steinberger

Public Relations Manager Read More
Heather Steinberger

Heather Steinberger

Public Relations Manager

As CRYP’s public relations manager, Heather writes all of the organization’s press releases, produces its monthly e-newsletter, handles media relations, contributes to the website, and assists with fundraising, outreach and other development activities. She volunteered at the Main in the summer and fall of 2006 and became a staff member in 2007.

A graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism, Heather has nearly 20 years’ experience in communications. In the last two decades, she has worked as a staff editor for two national magazines and as a public-relations specialist for two nationally recognized advertising agencies, served as the public affairs manager for a not-for-profit contemporary arts center, and volunteered on the marketing committees for a maritime museum and humane society.

Heather has operated her own full-time freelance writing business since 2004. She continues to serve as a contributing editor for three national magazines, and her articles regularly appear in a variety of regional and national publications. An award-winning writer, she is the recipient of the Denver Woman’s Press Club’s annual “Minnie” grand prize. Heather makes frequent trips to Eagle Butte from her home in Bailey, Colorado.

Jody Sarkozy-Banoczy

Jody Sarkozy-Banoczy

Development Associate Read More
Jody Sarkozy-Banoczy

Jody Sarkozy-Banoczy

Development Associate

Jody Sarkozy-Banoczy is an independent grant-writing consultant based in the Washington D.C. area. Her expertise lies in the arts and in native community development. She has 15 years of experience and success writing grants to many foundations and federal agencies, including the CDFI Fund, Administration for Native Americans, USDA, HUD and others.

Jody is the former director of development for First Nations Oweesta Corporation, and her work supports organizations focused on native artist entrepreneurship, small business development, youth, leadership and affordable housing.

Wendell Nezzie, Jr.

Wendell Nezzie, Jr.

Youth Programs Assistant Read More
Wendell Nezzie, Jr.

Wendell Nezzie, Jr.

Youth Programs Assistant

While working with CRYP, Wendell has completed coursework towards a degree in criminal justice from Oglala Lakota College. He is currently in charge of CRYP’s wellness program; he plans and executes all fitness-related activities, including daily workouts and weekly fitness challenges, and he helps coordinate teen programming for the Wellness Internship Program.

Brenna Crow

Brenna Crow

Youth Programs Assistant & Keya Cafe Cook Read More
Brenna Crow

Brenna Crow

Youth Programs Assistant & Keya Cafe Cook
Khalid Garreau

Khalid Garreau

Youth Programs Assistant Read More
Khalid Garreau

Khalid Garreau

Youth Programs Assistant

An enrolled member of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe, Khalid Garreau was born and raised on the Cheyenne River reservation until he moved to Rapid City in 2007. Now a student at Georgia State University in Atlanta, where he majors in International Affairs, Khalid has returned to CRYP for a semester.

Khalid is responsible for the implementation of youth programs, from teen internships to special events and activities. He also has a role in the Keya Café and Winyan Toka Win Garden. He says that working at CRYP provides unique challenges that help both him and the Cheyenne River community in creating a better future. He has aspirations of one day running a nonprofit to better his community—following in the footsteps of his Aunt Julie Garreau.

Leo Benator

Leo Benator

Youth Programs Assistant Read More
Leo Benator

Leo Benator

Youth Programs Assistant

Leo Benator is 20 years old, and he hails from Duluth, Georgia, where he graduated from Duluth High School. Leo is currently attending Georgia State University in Atlanta, where he is pursuing dual majors in history and political science. He says the Cheyenne River reservation is truly beautiful, and he is so glad he gets to be here.

Leo is excited for all the things he will learn from CRYP, which he anticipates will be applicable to other parts of his life, and he hopes to be able to contribute to the betterment of the Cheyenne River community. One day, he hopes to be involved in politics, whether that means running campaigns or running for office himself. He truly wants to make the world a better place, and he feels that he is helping to do that by working at CRYP.

Mina Habibi

Mina Habibi

Website and Graphic Design Associate Read More
Mina Habibi

Mina Habibi

Website and Graphic Design Associate

As CRYP’s website and design associate, Mina manages the organization’s website and e-store backend, and assists with other graphic design related needs. She has enjoyed working with CRYP for over 10 years.

Mina holds a BFA in Graphic Design from Old Dominion University and has 18 years of experience with educational, human services and arts related non-profits as well as communications and pr firms. She is an award winner designer and has operated her own freelance design business since 2000. She currently works not only with CRYP but also with number of small businesses and entrepreneurs for their branding and design needs.

She lives in the suburbs of Washington, DC with her husband, teaches yoga and also owns a photography business.

Explore About Section

Mission & History

In 1988, Julie Garreau and a group of volunteers founded CRYP in a defunct bar on Eagle Butte’s Main Street. We’ve come a long way since then. Learn more about our Mission and History.

Staff

CRYP wouldn’t be where it is today without our resourceful, hard-working staff members, who routinely go well beyond the call of duty to serve our children, families and community. Learn more about our Staff.

Board of Directors

We are fortunate to have the support of a dedicated group of local and regional community leaders, who consistently offer their guidance as CRYP continues to grow and evolve. Learn more about our Board of Directors. 

Advisory Board

As we pursue our ongoing mission in the Cheyenne River community, and engage with partners across the country, CRYP also calls on a team of valued professionals for advice and expertise. Learn more about CRYP’s Advisory Board.

Facilities

A core component of our mission is to offer safe, positive, healthy spaces for our young people, families and community members to gather, exchange ideas, learn, socialize and thrive. Learn more about our Facilities.

Honors & Awards

Through the years, CRYP’s efforts have been recognized by a variety of regional and national organizations. Learn more about Our Honors and Awards.

Publications

We strive to keep our partners, supporters and friends up to date on all the latest happenings here at CRYP. Click here to see our Publications.

Financials

CRYP is dedicated to full transparency. Click here for our latest Financial statements and 990.