The Cheyenne River Youth Project is pleased to announce that Dawn E. “Dawnee” LeBeau has joined its full-time staff as deputy director. She is responsible for developing CRYP’s strategic plan and budget, overseeing fundraising activities and grants, and providing leadership for all daily operations — including youth programs, social enterprises, community services and events, facilities management, office adminstration, and human resources.

LeBeau said she is proud of CRYP’s ability to offer programming that amplifies indigenous Lakota virtues, language, kinship, and love for traditional lands, communities, and foods. She noted that she particularly enjoys working in many capacities, and increasing her own knowledge of the opportunities the youth project offers Lakota youth.

“The work is fulfilling,” she said. “I enjoy assisting community relatives and all people through generosity, and I love building personal and professional relationships. Each day, I come to work prepared to help community, and I hope that the knowledge I carry will be beneficial in all realms of CRYP.”

According to Julie Garreau, CRYP’s executive director, LeBeau is already making a difference at the nonprofit, grassroots organization.

“In the time she’s been here, Dawnee has brought enthusiasm, ideas, and a willingness to be both a leader and a team player,” Garreau said. “I’m really proud to have Dawnee on our CRYP team, because she makes us even stronger.”

An enrolled member of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe, LeBeau is Itazipacola Oo’henunpa of the Tetonwan Lakota Oyate. She currently resides on the Cheyenne River reservation with her two beautiful wakanyeja, Ashten and Anjali.

LeBeau 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.

To stay up to date on the latest CRYP news and events, follow the youth project on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

The Cheyenne River Youth Project, founded in 1988, is a grassroots, not-for-profit organization dedicated to providing the youth of the Cheyenne River reservation with access to a vibrant and secure future through a wide variety of culturally sensitive and enduring programs, projects and facilities that ensure strong, self-sufficient families and communities.