Intro Image - An Evening Out with Sean Sherman at Ganondagan

An Evening Out with Sean Sherman at Ganondagan

May 1, 2024
Sean Sherman stands with his arms crossed wearing a black chef's apron and a red beaded necklace. His long braid rests over his right shoulder.
Photo by Nancy Bundt

As spring turns to summer, we will host a one-of-a-kind learning event at Ganondagan State Historic Site with Sean Sherman, award-winning chef, author, and activist. Sean founded the charity North American Traditional Indigenous Food Systems (NATIFS) and is the author of “The Sioux Chef’s Indigenous Kitchen,” a James Beard Award-winning cookbook. He was named to Time magazine’s list of the most influential people in 2023 and received the Julia Child Award that same year.

As your Community Foundation, we see a role to play in lifting up issues facing our community, such as food sovereignty for Indigenous peoples. We all benefit from our region’s unique Indigenous cultures, art, agriculture, decision-making techniques, and histories. Our Indigenous neighbors continuously display resiliency in the face of systemic racism and inequitable access to resources.

More About Sean

Sean Sherman’s works seamlessly weave together Indigenous past, present, and future. He explores traditional cooking techniques and heirloom ingredients, while situating elegant Indigenous recipes on restaurant menus and food truck chalkboards. He contrasts Native knowledge of nutrition, medicine, and sustainable living against the environmental degradation, poor diets, and health inequities brought by colonialism.

The Sioux Chef's Indigenous Kitchen cookbook by Sean Sherman with Beth Dooley. James Beard Foundation Book Award Winner.

A turning point in Sean’s career came when he realized that “as a chef in a vibrant food scene that celebrated exotic flavors and far-flung cooking styles, nothing represented the land they were currently on, or what the people indigenous to this area ate.” Through both his nonprofit and restaurant work, Sean has opened doors for other Native cooks and inspired people across cultures to become curious about Indigenous food practices and traditions.

Sean is a member of the Oglala Lakota Sioux tribe, located in what is today known as southwestern South Dakota, but seeks to help reclaim and celebrate the rich culinary heritage of Indigenous communities around the world.

Exploring Local Indigenous History

The eight-county area the Community Foundation serves is located on the lands of the Haudenosaunee (hoe-dee-no-SHOW-nee) people. Our learning event with Sean will take place at Ganondagan State Historic Site, a long-standing partner and grantee. Ganondagan shares Sean’s conviction that a reconnection with the land and the joy of Indigenous cooking are key ingredients for our collective wellbeing and prosperity.

Living History at Ganondagan

We have been proud to support Ganondagan programs such as the White Corn Project and Haudenosaunee Healthy Roots, Culture, and Traditions Series, which includes food gatherings where Native youth and families learn how to bring Indigenous foods back into their daily lives.

By creating an opportunity to learn from Sean, we hope to celebrate Indigenous culture and expertise, sit with the ongoing impacts of colonialism, dispossession, and genocide, and imagine a rich future that empowers Native peoples.

Tickets for this exciting event are now sold out.

The Sioux Chef symbol is a circle split into four parts by an X, with black, white, yellow, and red segments.

Visit Sean Sherman’s website

Watch Sean Sherman’s TED Talk

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