In this week’s podcast you’ll learn about a man’s exploration of his family’s ancestry, you’ll hear a young woman’s struggle to keeping her young daughters safe while writing and promoting her first book and memoir while surviving domestic abuse at home, you’ll descend into addiction and come out on the other side, before finally making friends with a person with whom you once vehemently disagreed.
Our podcast today was recorded in front of a live audience on October 2, 2018, to a sold-out crowd at The Wilma in Missoula, MT. 8 storytellers shared their true personal story on the theme “It’s Complicated”. Today we hear from four of those storytellers.
Our first story comes to us from Chris LaTray, whose father wants nothing to do with his Native American heritage. As Chris becomes an adult, he begins exploring this heritage, seeking understanding of who he is and where he comes from. Chris calls his story “How’s It Going, Chief?””.
Chris La Tray is a writer, a walker, and a photographer. His freelance writing and photography has appeared in various regional and national publications. His first book, One-Sentence Journal: Short Poems and Essays from the World at Large, was recently released via Riverfeet Press. Chris is Chippewa-Cree Métis, and is an enrolled member of the Little Shell Tribe of Chippewa Indians. Follow Chris at chrislatray.com.
Get Chris’ new book: One-Sentence Journal: Short Poems and Essays from the World at Large
Stephanie Land does the best she can as she navigates escaping and surviving domestic violence while keeping her young daughters safe and writing and promoting her first book and memoir. She calls her story “Setting the Missing Piece Down”.
Stephanie Land’s work has been featured in The New York Times, the New York Review of Books, The Washington Post, The Guardian, Vox, Salon and many other outlets. She lives in Missoula, Montana. Follow Stephanie at stepville.com. Her first book, MAID, Hard Work, Low Pay, and a Mother’s Will to Survive A Memoir is available starting in January 2019 from Hachette. Pre-order her book now!
Steve Brester, a retired Missoula police officer, recovers from drug addiction and alcoholism after being caught stealing from the state crime evidence lab. Recovery led him to work towards ending unemployment for Missoula’s Low Income, Previously Incarcerated and Homeless Populations. Steve’s story is called “Addiction and Second Chance”.
Steve Brester and his wife are native Missoulians, graduating from Sentinel and Hellgate respectively. They both attended University of Montana and have been married for 34 years. They have three adult children and two grandchildren. Steve is a retired City of Missoula Police Officer who served from 1992-2012. Learn more about Missoula Works.
Betsy Mulligan-Dague’s work as a peace advocate leads her to forge an unlikely friendship with a Vietnam veteran. Together they move past their differences and see the importance of the work that each of them engages in. Betsy calls her story “My Friend Dan”.
Betsy Mulligan-Dague has a 30 year history as a clinical social worker helping families and individuals address challenges in their lives. She has taught numerous groups to look at ways they can understand the emotions and needs behind communication. Since 2005, she has been the Executive Director of the Jeannette Rankin Peace Center, where she has continued to focus on ways people can increase their communication skills to become better at peacemaking and conflict resolution, believing that our difference will never be as important as the things we have in common. She recently was featured in a full-length documentary, Beyond the Divide: The Courage to Find Common Ground about her efforts to build bridges between peace advocates and veterans. Betsy is a past president of the Missoula Sunrise Rotary Club and currently serves as the Chair of the State Peace & Conflict Resolution Committee for Rotary as well as a board member of the Waterton Glacier International Peace Park.
She is available to speak on peace, peacemaking, conflict resolution, team building, nonviolent communication, women’s issues, social activism, the history and importance of Jeannette Rankin as well as specifics of nonprofit management, fair trade and earned income.
See the trailer for “9 Pieces of Peace”
See the trailer for Beyond the Divide
Listen to “A Conversation Between a Peace Activst and a Vietnam Veteran” on PRX.