Francis White Lance
The Honorary Doctor of Letters was conferred on Francis White Lance at university spring commencement ceremonies held on May 4, 2012. Francis White Lance is a member of the Oglala Sioux Tribe and serves as a Cultural Coordinator and teacher at American Horse School in Allen, South Dakota. He was born in Rapid City, South Dakota and through hard work and determination fought through the multigenerational trauma of his people on the Pine Ridge Reservation earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in Western Philosophy from the University of Dubuque (Iowa) and a Master of Theological Studies from Seabury-Western Theological Seminary (at Northwestem University).
Mr. White Lance is a veteran of the US Air Force. He is an associate instructor (part-time) for the Oglala Lakota College in Kyle, South Dakota where he teaches courses in Lakota Thought and Philosophy, Lakota Social Systems, Lakota Language, and Lakota History and Culture. He is an adjunct professor at Catholic Theological Union (Chicago). The Catholic Theological Union for the past 25 years has sponsored 120 Traveling Seminars to the White Lance residence where Mr. White Lance has lectured to over 1500 students. Many of these students are from Europe. Letters of recommendation identify that Mr. White Lance has hosted Winona State University students each summer since 2004 at his home, gave numerous presentations on Lakota culture and history, and allowed us onto his Sun Dance grounds to help prepare for upcoming ceremonies for the Lakota people, enabled our students to participate actively in the Lakota culture they were studying. Mr. White Lance has also given presentations on the Lakota way of life at the WSU Residential College in 2005 and has conducted Hunka ceremonies for the WSU community in 2005, 2006 and 2007. Mr. White Lance has also given lessons on the Lakota way of life and performed ceremonies for international students from Norway who visited the WSU campus and community in 2005 and 2006. Mr. White Lance was also invited to deliver the Commencement Address at the fall graduation ceremony in December of 2007 at Winona State University. Mr. White Lance continues to lecture at schools and universities across the country. He is an ordained priest in the Anglican Catholic Church in America. Mr. White Lance is a Lakota spiritual leader, Sundance leader and Yuwipi man and facilitated ceremony and cultural programs at three different federal and state prisons in South Dakota, Minnesota and Illinois from 2000 to 2005. Mr. White Lance is invited to travel all across the country to perform "ceremony" for those in need. His reputation is expanding beyond the United States border with an invitation to perform "ceremony" overseas. Francis' two grandfathers, Daniel White Lance and Dewey Beard, are recognized as waniors that fought at Wounded Knee in December, 1890.
Dewey Beard is the last living survivor and became a well-known speaker of the event. Francis is a decedent of "Tasunke Witko" (Crazy Horse) and is the current leader of Crazy Horses' "Hoksi Hakata" (last child) Warrior Society. Francis is an author of two published books that provides guidance and council of the Lakota Way of Life so his people will have access to their heritage.
• Black Hills State University, Graduate Studies in Education: 1998 - 2000
• Masters of Theological Studies: 1986 - 1989
Seabury-Western Theological Seminary: 1984-1986
• The University of Dubuque: Bachelor Arts Degree (Philosophy).
Awards and Recognitions:
• Winner of the Annual Philosophy Award in 1986.
Lakota Cultural Book Publications
• Tasunke Witko Woihanble: The Vision of Crazy Horse: 2007
• Why The Black Hills are Sacred: A Unified Theory. of the Lakota Sundance,
Ancestors Incorporated: 2004
Service to Winona State University :
• Delivered the Commencement Address at Winona State University in December: 2007
• Presented programs for the Residential College at Winona State University and performed Lakota ceremonies in which several WSU students attended: 2005
• Each year Mr. White Lance presents programs and conducts ceremonies for WSU students and international students that visit us from Norway: 2005
• Facilitated programs for Winona State University students on the Lakota way of life.
• Provided facilities for our students to camp at his residence on Pine Ridge Reservation for two days each summer.
• Facilitated an opportunity for our students to provide community service for upcoming ceremonies and Sun Dances: 2004 -2008