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Walking in Two Worlds: Understanding the Two-Spirit/Native 2SLGBTQ+ Community

June 1 @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm


Join Two-Sprit leaders Gary Neumann (Salish) and Lenny Hayes (Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate) on the historical roles and identities of Two-Spirit/Native 2SLGBTQ+ people and how colonization and historical and intergenerational trauma have impacted the Two-Spirit-LGBTQ+ Community. Together, Gary and Lenny will share their knowledge to educate individuals, families, and organizations to understand and support children, adults, elders, and relatives who may identify as Two-Spirit or Native LGBTQ+.

In this session, the presenters will:

  • Share the history and community roles of Two-Spirit people
  • Bring awareness to the high rates of violence placed on the Two-Spirit individuals
  • Discuss the behavioral health issues that impact the Two-Spirit Community
  • Inform participants how to be an ally to youth and adults who identify as Two-Spirit/Native LGBTQ.


Gary Neumann Salish – Pend’Orielle

Gary Neumann is an enrolled member of the Confederated Salish & Kootenai Tribes of the Flathead Indian Nation and identifies as Two-Spirit. He has over 35 years of experience in prevention and human resource development. Gary has worked successfully with various tribal, state, and federal agencies in program design, implementation, and evaluation, focusing on at-risk youth, families, and communities. Currently, Gary works for Tribal Tech as a Training and Technical Assistance Coordinator and serves as a task lead for training SAMHSA staff. He developed a series of newsletters – Spirit-Honor-Inclusion, focusing on Two-Spirit issues. Gary previously served as the Project Manager of the Rocky Mountain Tribal Access to Recovery III Program. He also served as the Training and Technical Assistance Director of the Native American Center for Excellence, a national resource center for Native American substance abuse prevention providing culturally centered training, technical assistance, and information resource services to various Native and non-Native audiences throughout the United States. His work experience includes extensive knowledge of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), Tribal Law and Order Act (TLOA), and how it applies to American Indians and Alaska Natives, having developed and conducted ACA trainings for Montana/Wyoming Tribes. Gary is skilled in assessment, capacity building, prevention specialist certification, marketing, grant writing, methamphetamine prevention, youth violence, bullying and suicide prevention, and sustainability. He has developed several culturally appropriate training curriculums and community-based organizing modules and presented and trained at national and international conferences throughout the United States, Alaska, and Canada. He is a certified SAPST Trainer/Facilitator.

Lenny Hayes Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate

Lenny Hayes is an enrolled member of the Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate Tribe and is the owner and operator of Tate Topa Consulting, LLC and is currently in private practice specializing in Marriage and Family Therapy. He has extensive training in mental and chemical health issues that impact the Two-Spirit/Native LGBTQ+ and Native Community. Hayes speaks across the country on the impact of historical and intergenerational trauma, violence, child welfare issues, and the impact of sexual violence on men and boys. Lenny is the former Missing and Murdered Two-Spirit Project Assistant for Sovereign Bodies Institute and serves as a board or committee member for StrongHearts Native Helpline, Wac’ ang’a (Sweet Grass) Inc. Victim Services, First Nations Repatriation Institute, Southwest Indigenous Women’s Coalition, National Quality Improvement Center on Tailored Services, Placement Stability and Permanency for LGBTQ/Two-Spirit children and youth in foster care, and the National Resource Center for Domestic Violence.


June 1
6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Event Categories:


Online Event


Mitchell Museum of the American Indian
(847) 475-1030