Benjamin Young lives in Hydaburg and teaches students at the X̱ántsii Náay Preschool program. His Haida name is K’uyáang. He is a Raven of the Yahgw ’Láanaas Clan.
Young learned X̱aad Kíl from his chanáa (grandfather), Claude Morrison Kúng Skíis, a respected Haida Elder who lived to the age of 100. K’uyáang expresses his gratitude for the blessing of his chanáa’s longevity and the patience his grandfather provided while he gained his foundation of X̱aad Kíl. K’uyáang credits his wife, Marita Tolson, for her unwavering support and guidance toward his goal of proficiency.
Over the years, he has also been influenced by sociolinguist Dr. Jordan Lachler and Gwich'in instructor Hishinlai' Peter.
As a teenager, Young taught his first language classes at SHI’s Latseen Leadership Academy. Through other language projects and programs, Young has worked with elders Woodrow Morrison, Alma Cook, Annie Peele, Viola Burgess, Charles Natkong, and Erma Lawrence. Young pays respect to all the "die-hards" who valued our way of life and felt it was important to preserve the language in spite of many obstacles associated with westernization.
In the spring and summer of 2017, Young contributed his time to help create a full feature-length film that utilized the Haida language as its sole medium. This film featured the three living variations of the Haida language to create the movie, The Edge of The Knife. In this film, Young acted, taught, and provided language support to help make the movie a visual and audio feast of Haida culture. He was honored to work alongside fluent speakers Delores Churchill Islkyalas and Jane Kristovich K'ujúuhl.
Young graduated from Butler University with a degree in secondary education and began teaching in 2014. He also graduated with a Master of Arts in First Nations Linguistics at Simon Fraser University. He has had many additional roles in language revitalization, such as language mentor, researcher, and curriculum developer. Young has also served as a cultural specialist with SHI, the Xaadas Kíl Kuyaas Foundation, and the Ketchikan Indian Community, among other organizations.