– Haskell students, staff faculty, and alumni, and the Haskell Indian Leader readers;
Shí éí Bry Cordell Smiley yinishyé – Hałtsooi nishłí, Naakai Diné’é bashíshchíín, Kinyáa’aanii
dáshícheii, Tahnees’zahnii dáshínálí – Akó Diné Nádleehí nishłí. [Hello, my name is Bry Cordell Smiley.
I am the Meadow People, born for the Mexican People / People Who Wander, Towering House for my
maternal grandfather, and the Tangle clan for my paternal grandfather, in sum, that is how I identity as a
Diné (Navajo) person.]
I one of the four diligent committee members taking the reins on the Haskell LGBTQI+ Grant,
funded by the American Indian College Fund (AICF). This five thousand dollar grant is to bring
awareness to our community we call Haskell – this institution has been transforming since its
establishment in 1884. This grant will not only celebrate Two Spirit / LGBTQI+ individuals on tribal
colleges (i.e., Haskell), but those in the past that were affected by colonial attitudes demeaning their
expression, also the present, now. As well as, include strategies and ideas of inclusion here on Haskell
campus which begins with telling our story after 130+ years and integrate Indigenous traditions, history,
& culture within the elements of the Haskell LGBTQI+ Grant project, which also is emphasized within
our academia here at Haskell.
Moreover, February 2018 is deemed the 1 st Annual Haskell Two Spirit / LGBTQI+ Month –
we, Haskell will hope to move forward in the 21 st century and realize no matter what, our Two Spirit /
LGBTQI+ people are still our relatives. In addition, the Haskell LGBTQI+ Grant will consist of four
weeks of events that pertain to the not only Two Spirit / LGBTQI+ peoples, but all people. For example,
Haskell will be hosting a “First-Ever” Two Spirit Powwow on Saturday, Feb. 24 th , 2018, beginning at
2:00 PM to MIDNIGHT at Tecumseh Hall on Haskell campus, *Alcohol/Drug-Free Event – This specific
type of powwow has never happened on Haskell grounds, ever – with its celebration of Two Spirit
peoples, Two Spirit Powwows are the expression of healing, as dancing is and the unity of Two Spirit
peoples. The powwow will be the conclusion of the project itself, we are planning to have an awesome
time throughout the month of February! *Our first two events will be Bystander Training (Wed., Jan. 31,
2018 @ Minoka Hall, 12-3PM) and Safe Zone Training (Fri., Feb. 2, 2018 @ Minoka Hall, 12-3PM).
In all, this grant is a mere celebration, remembrance, and shift of our self-determination as a tribal
college/university, but as tribal citizens whom represent well-over 140 tribal nations across the country. I
hope that the fruition of this grant will send the message that we are here. We have been revered and
recognized in form or another from our family, community, and tribal nation / tradition / stories. Also, I
hope everyone whom attends our events leaves with some new knowledge, questions, and comes from a
place of l o v e. I would like to thank Haskell Indian Nations University for hosting our events and AICF
for $ponsoring, ahé’hee’ laa (thank you much)!
-This is for the ones whom have gone on, the ones fighting on, #MMIWM, the Haskell babies, the
Haskell kids who wrote a letter so they could dance, and to my relations – Shímá ayoo aniinishní, I am
who I am because of you. –B
*For more information, you can contact Bry Smiley via e-mail, firstname.lastname@example.org.