Native Lights is a weekly, half-hour radio program hosted by Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe members and siblings, Leah Lemm and Cole Premo. Native Lights is a space for people in Native communities around Mni Sota Mkoce — a.k.a. Minnesota — to tell their stories about finding their gifts and sharing them with the community.
Today, Leah and Cole speak with Thomas Draskovic, a citizen of the Standing Rock Reservation in South Dakota who is an educator, actor, musician, artist and activist.
Thomas has worked in the Twin Cities Native community in both schools and nonprofits for over 20 years, and for the past 16 years he’s been at the American Indian Magnet School in East St. Paul as the Lakota Language and Cultural Specialist.
He shares with us how storytelling and authenticity are crucial in his approach to teaching. He also explains why his mother, a master linguist, inspires his passion for educating youth and his strength to “do something” out in the world.
In addition to his work teaching, Thomas also plays guitar and sings in the band Pretendians, featured as part of a previous Native Lights episode. He talks with us more about the meaning behind the name and how it brings about discussion.
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