http://www.cherokeephoenix.orgPrincipal Chief Bill John Baker receives a gift from Society of American Indian Government Employees Chairwoman Fredericka Joseph on behalf of the organization for the tribe’s support on June 7 at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tulsa in Catoosa, Oklahoma. JAMI MURPHY/CHEROKEE PHOENIX
Principal Chief Bill John Baker receives a gift from Society of American Indian Government Employees Chairwoman Fredericka Joseph on behalf of the organization for the tribe’s support on June 7 at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tulsa in Catoosa, Oklahoma. JAMI MURPHY/CHEROKEE PHOENIX

SAIGE promotes recruitment, advancement of Natives

Cherokee Nation citizen Brian Barlow asks a question during the Society of American Indian Government Employees annual conference on June 7 at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Catoosa, Oklahoma. JAMI MURPHY/CHEROKEE PHOENIX
Cherokee Nation citizen Brian Barlow asks a question during the Society of American Indian Government Employees annual conference on June 7 at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Catoosa, Oklahoma. JAMI MURPHY/CHEROKEE PHOENIX
BY JAMI MURPHY
Senior Reporter – @cp_jmurphy
06/14/2016 08:15 AM
CATOOSA, Okla. – The Society of American Indian Government Employees held its annual conference June 6-9 at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tulsa where the organization promoted the recruitment, retention, development and advancement of American Indian and Alaska Native government employees.

According to its website, SAIGE is a national nonprofit organization representing American Indian and Alaska Native employees of federal, tribal, state and local governments. It also provides a forum on the issues, challenges and opportunities of those employees and fosters a professional network among them.

SAIGE Chairwoman Fredericka Joseph, a Kaw Nation citizen with Cherokee decent, said the organization also supports American Indians and Alaska Natives being hired in the federal workforce.

“We look at them being hired into the workforce as well as promoted up into programs and into grades that they can make a difference in what happens to our tribes in terms of impacts with policies and that type of thing,” she said.

SAIGE also has veterans and youth programs, with the youth program providing leadership training.

“So we really value our youth. They are the heartbeat of the organization. And then we honor out veterans as well,” she said.

Joseph said during the conference there were several tracks or sessions that attendees could learn from to take information back to their respective communities.

“We have federal Indian law. We have EEOHR (equal employment opportunity). We have professional track. We have natural resources, and we have cultural diversity pieces. We found that being able to give tracks to different people that work in different fields, that they’re able to get more information and learn different things from the trainers that come in here,” she said. “We also look at how we can honor that federal trust responsibility for our agencies and that they should be respecting that government-to-government relationships, so that’s part of our training as well.”

CN citizen Brian Barlow, who’s originally from Tahlequah and a graduate of George Washington University in Washington, D.C., said he was invited to attend SAIGE after his freshmen year of college.

“I had just finished my freshman year at the University of Arkansas, and I received the Gates (Millennium) scholarship my senior year (of high school), and (had) a lot of people in my life pushing me to go further. And so my dad convinced me to apply to school in D.C., and I didn’t think I’d get in and I got in and I had to go. So SAIGE really gave me a lot of the confidence I needed to say ‘well there are Native people there in D.C. and there are people trying to do good things there, and I think I can really find a place where I’ll be comfortable and be happy there,’ so that really helped me,” Barlow said.

He said he continued attending SAIGE conferences to meet different types of people.

“Being here from Tahlequah, sure, you can meet people from Creek Nation, Comanche, Choctaw, Chickasaw and western tribes like Apache and Cheyenne Arapaho, but meeting tribes over there in New Mexico, just meeting all kinds of new people is the best part about SAIGE,” he said. “It really is a blessing to get to learn about other Native peoples because we all do things differently. We have overlap, but it’s unique and a blessing to meet all these people striving to make differences in their communities and Indian Country.”

The conference also brought tribal dignitaries, who thanked and voiced support of the work SAIGE does for Indian Country, including Principal Chief Bill John Baker, Creek Nation Chief James Floyd and Osage Nation Chief Geoffrey Standing Bear.

For more information, visit www.saige.org.
ᏣᎳᎩ

ᎦᏚᏌ, ᎣᎦᎳᎰᎹ – Ꮎ Society of American Indian Government Employees ᏥᎾᏅᏛᏁᎰᎢ ᏑᏕᏘᏴᏓ ᏗᏓᏂᎳᏫᎪᎢ ᏗᎭᎷᏱ 6-9 ᎥᎿ Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tulsa, ᎠᎾᏃ Ꮎ ᎤᎾᏓᏡᎬ ᏚᏂᎧᏁᏉᏍᏓᏅ ᏗᎦᏟᏐᏗ, ᏗᏂᏯᏂᎲ, ᎪᏢᏅᏍᏗ ᎠᎴ ᎦᎸᎳᏗ ᎠᏂᎩᏍᏙᏗ Ꮎ American Indian ᎠᎴ Alaska Native ᎠᏰᎵ ᎤᎾᏙᏢᏒᎢ ᏧᏂᎶᏫᏍᏓᏁᎯ.

ᎠᏏᎳᏕᏫᏒ ᎤᏙᏢᏒ ᎧᏃᎮᏍᎬ, SAIGE ᎥᎿ ᎬᎾᏕᎾ Ꮭ ᎠᏕᎳ ᎪᏢᏍᎦ ᎤᎾᏓᏡᎦ ᎤᏅᏌ ᎤᎾᏓᏓᏅᏒ American Indian ᎠᎴ Alaska Natives ᏧᏂᎶᏫᏍᏓᏁ Ꮎ ᏂᎬᎾᏛ ᎠᏰᎵ, ᏗᏂᎳᏍᏓᎸ, ᏍᎦᏚᎦ ᎠᎴ ᎡᏍᎦᎾ ᎠᏰᎵ ᏚᏙᏢᏒᎢ. ᏃᎴ ᎠᎵᏍᏕᎵᏍᎪ ᎧᏃᎮᏢᏍᎬ Ꮎ ᏗᏯᏙᎯᎢ, ᏯᏓᏁᎵᏙᏓ ᎠᎴ ᏗᏓᎵᏍᎪᎸᏓᏁᏗᎢ ᎥᎿ ᏧᏂᎶᏫᏍᏓᏁᎯ ᎠᎴ ᎠᎵᏍᏕᎵᏗᎰ ᎢᏳᏍᏗ ᎢᏯᏛᏁᎯ ᏧᎾᏚᏓᎳ ᎤᎾᎵᏧᏴᎢ.

SAIGE ᎠᎨᏯ ᏗᏓᏘᎿᎢ, Fredricka Joseph, Ꭷ ᎠᏰᎵ ᎤᏙᏢᏒ ᎨᎳ ᏃᎴ ᏣᎳᎩ ᎤᎵᎶᎯᏗᏙᎳᎩ ᎠᏗᏍᎬ ᎾᎤᎾᏓᏡᎬ ᏃᎴ ᎤᏂᎫᏍᏓᎣᎢ American Indians ᎠᎴ Alaska Natives ᏗᎨᏥᎾᏢᏍᎬᎢ ᎥᎿ ᏂᎬᎾᏛ ᎠᏰᎵ ᏗᎦᎶᏫᏍᏓᏁᏗ. “ ᏕᎨᏥᎾᏢᏍᎬ ᏙᏥᎪᏫᏘᎰ ᏃᎴ ᎨᎦᎵᏒᎵᏛᏅᎢ ᎥᎿ ᏚᎾᏙᏢᏒ ᎠᎴ ᏧᏂᏅᏍᏗ ᏧᏂᏅᏗ ᎾᎮᏃ ᏄᏓᎴ ᏱᎾᏅᎦ Ꮎ ᏂᎦᎵᏍᏓᏂᏙᎲ ᎥᎿ ᏗᎦᏤᎵ ᏕᎩᎳᏍᏓᎸᎢ Ꮎ ᏓᏓᎴᏂᏍᎬ Ꮎ ᏓᏓᏛᎾᏍᏗᏍᎬ ᏚᎵᎪᏒ ᏗᎳᏏᏙᏗ ᎠᎴ Ꮎ ᎥᏍᎩ ᎢᏳᏍᏗ” ᎤᏛᏅ.

SAIGE ᏃᎴ ᏚᏃᏢ ᎠᏂᏲᏍᎩ ᎤᏁᏙᎸ ᎠᎴ ᎩᎠ ᏗᎾᏛᏍᎩ ᏚᎾᏓᏡᎬᎢ, Ꮎ ᏗᏂᏲᏟ ᎤᎾᏓᏡᎬ ᎠᏓᏍᏕᎵᏍᎬ ᎠᎬᏱ ᎠᏓᏘᏂᏙᎯ ᎠᎾᎵᏏᎾᏍᏗᎲᎢ. “ᎤᏙᎯᏳᏃ ᏧᏂᎬᏩᎶᏗ ᎥᎿ ᎩᎳ ᏗᎾᏛᏍᎩ. ᎥᏍᎩᎾ ᎤᎾᏙᎯᏳ ᎥᎿ ᎤᎾᏓᏡᎬᎢ. ᎠᎴ ᏙᏣᎮᎵᏍᏗᏍᎪᎢ ᎠᏂᏲᏍᎩ ᎤᏁᏙᎸᎢ ᎥᏍᏊ.” ᎤᏛᏅᎢ.

Joseph ᏃᎴ ᎤᏛᏅ, ᎾᎯᏳ ᏥᏓᏂᎳᏫᎬ, ᎢᎦᏓ ᏗᏍᏓᏫᏛᏍᏗ ᎠᎴᏱᎩ Ꮎ ᏗᏂᎳᏫᏗᏍᎩ ᎡᎷᏊ ᏯᎾᏕᏠᎩ ᎨᏥᏃᎮᏎᎸᏅ ᎤᏂᏫᏓ ᎥᎿ ᎤᏂᏙᎯᏳᏌᏛᎢ ᏍᎦᏚᎩᎢ.

“ᏗᎧᏅᏩᏛᏍᏓᏅ ᏂᎬᎾᏛ ᎠᏰᎵ ᏙᎩᎭ. ᎣᎩᎭ EEOHR (equal emplyment opportunity). ᎣᎩᎭ ᎢᏳᏍᏗ ᎢᏯᏛᏁᎯ ᎠᏍᏓᏫᏗᏅᏍᏗ. ᏙᎩᎭ ᏂᎬᏩᏍᏛ ᏧᎬᏩᎶᏗ ᎦᎷᎩ, ᎠᎴ ᏙᎩᎭ ᏧᏓᎴᏅᏓ ᎢᏳᎾᏛᏁᎵᏓᏍᏗ ᎦᏟᏏᏍᏗ. ᎣᎦᏕᎸᎰᏒ Ꮎ ᏧᏓᎴᏅᏓ ᏴᏫ ᏱᏙᏥᏁ ᏗᏍᏓᏫᏛᏍᏗ Ꮎ ᏧᏓᎴᏅᏓ ᏧᏂᎶᏫᏍᏓᏁᎯ ᏓᏁᏙᎲᎢ, ᎡᎷᏊ ᎤᎪᏓ ᏯᏂᎩᏏᏓ ᎧᏃᎮᏓ ᎠᎴ ᏯᎾᏕᏠᎩ ᏧᏓᎴᏅᏓ ᏗᎾᏕᏲᎲᏍᎩ ᏚᏂᏪᏲᎲᏍᎬᎢ ᏳᏁᏙᎳ”, ᎤᏛᏅ. ᏃᎴ ᎣᎩᎦᏛᎲᏍᎪ ᎦᏙ ᎣᎦᏛᏂᏗ ᏙᏥᎸᏉᏙᏗ Ꮎ ᏂᎬᎾᏛ ᎠᏰᎵ ᎰᏩ ᎠᏰᎸᏗ ᎤᎾᏚᏓᎸᎢ ᏙᎦᏤᎵ ᏙᏥᏅᏍᏓᏅ ᎠᎴ ᏓᎾᎴᎮᎵᏍᏗᏍᎨᏍᏗ Ꮎ ᏂᎬᎾᏛ ᎠᏰᎵ -ᎥᎿ-ᏂᎬᎾᏛ ᎠᏰᎵ ᏗᎾᏓᏙᎵᎩ, ᎾᎮᏃ ᎥᏍᎩᎾᏍᏊ ᏗᏙᏣᏕᎶᏆᏍᎪᎢ”. CN ᎨᎳ, Brian Barlow, ᏓᎷᏈ ᎤᏙᎯᏳᎨᏒ ᏓᏳᎶᏒ ᎠᎴ ᏧᏍᏆᏓ ᎥᎿ George Washington University Ꮎ ᏩᏒᏓᏂ D.C., ᎤᏛᏅ, ᎠᏥᏯᏅ ᎤᏪᏓᏍᏗ SAIGE ᎤᏍᏆᏙᎾ ᎠᎬᏱ ᎠᎴᏂᏍᎩ Ꮎ ᎦᎸᎳᏗ ᏗᏕᎶᏆᏍᏗᎢ.

ᎩᎳ ᎠᎬᏱ ᏗᏕᎶᏆᏍᏙᏗ ᏗᎦᏍᏆᏛ ᎨᏒ ᎥᎿ University of Arkansas, ᎠᏩᏓᏌᏅ ᎨᏒ Gates (Millenium) ᏗᏕᎶᏆᏍᏙᏗ Ꮎ ᏗᏥᏆᏗᏍᎬ (high school), ᎠᎴ ᏴᏫ ᎬᎩᏍᏗᏰᏗᏍᎬ Ꮟ ᎭᎢᏎᏍᏗ ᎬᏬᏎᎲᎢ. ᎡᏙᏓᏃ ᎠᎦᏍᏗᏰᏓᏅ ᎪᏪᎳ ᏗᎧᎵᏐᏓ ᎥᎿ D.C., Ꮭ ᏯᏩᏓᏴᏎᎴᎢ ᎨᎵᏍᎬ, ᎠᏎᏃ ᎠᏩᏓᏴᏎᎴᎢ, ᎠᏎᏃ ᎠᏪᏅᏍᏓ ᏄᎵᏍᏓᏅᎢ. Ꮎ SAIGE ᎤᏙᎯᏳ ᎰᏩ ᏂᎬᏭᏂᏎᎸᎢ ᎡᎷᏊ ᏂᎩᏪᏍᏓ, “ᎭᏩ ᎡᎷᏊ ᎠᏂᏴᏫᏯ ᎠᏁᎭ ᎥᎿ D.C., ᎠᎴ ᏴᏫ ᎠᏁᎭ ᎠᎾᏁᎵᏗ ᎣᏍᏓ ᏳᎾᏛᏁᏗᎢ, ᎠᎴ ᎡᎷᏊ ᎪᎱᏍᏗ ᏱᏏᏩᏔ Ꮎ ᎣᏍᏓ ᎠᎩᏰᎸᏅᎢ ᎠᎴ ᎥᎿ ᏱᎦᎴᎮᎵᏍᏓ,” ᎥᏍᎩᎾ ᎤᏙᎯᏳ ᎠᎦᏍᏕᎸᎲᎢ,” Barlow ᎤᏛᏅᎢ.

ᎤᏛᏅ ᏃᎴ, Ꮟ ᏕᎨᏙᎲ SAIGE ᏱᏚᏂᎳᏫᏥ ᎾᏊᏃ ᎠᏂᏐᎢ ᎢᏳᏍᏗ ᎠᏂᏴᏫ ᏧᎾᏠᎯᏍᏗ.

“ᏓᎷᏈ ᏗᎩᎶᏒ ᏥᎩ, ᎡᎷᏊ ᏱᏗᎯᏩᏔ ᎠᏂᏴᏫᏯ ᎥᎿ ᎠᎫᏐ ᎠᏰᎵ ᎤᏙᏢᏒ, ᎧᎺᏂᏥ, ᏣᎦᏔ, ᏥᎦᏌ, ᏃᎴ ᎠᏂᏐ ᏭᏕᎵᎬ ᎠᏂᎳᏍᏓᎸ, Ꮎ ᎢᏳᏍᏗ ᎠᏇᏥ ᎠᎴ ᏌᏰᎾ ᎠᎴᏈᎰ, ᎠᏎᏃ ᏙᏣᏠᏍᎬ ᎠᏂᏐᎢ ᏗᎾᎳᏍᏓᎸ ᎥᎿ ᏍᏆᏂ ᏤᏍᏛᎢ, ᏙᏨᏠᏍᎬᏫᏊ ᎠᏂᏐ ᏴᏫ ᎥᏍᎩᎾ ᏫᏓᏤᏢᎢ Ꮎ SAIGE.” ᎤᏛᏅᎢ. “ᏙᏳᏃ ᎠᎵᎮᎵᏍᏙᏗ ᎠᏕᎶᏆᏍᏗ ᎠᏂᏐ ᏄᎾᏍᏛ ᎠᏂᎦᏰᎯᏯ, ᎾᎮᏃ ᏄᏓᎴᏏᏅᏊ ᏃᏣᏛᏁᎵᏙᎰᎢ. ᎤᏠᏱ ᎢᏳᏍᏗ ᏃᎦᏛᏃᎢ, ᎠᏎᏃ ᎤᎵᏍᏆᏂᎦᏗ ᎠᎴ ᎠᎵᎮᎵᏍᏙᏗ ᏗᎪᎵᏍᏓ ᎥᎿ ᏴᏫ Ꮎ ᏣᏂᎦᏙ ᏓᏤᏢ ᏄᏅᏂᏗ ᏧᎾᏤᎵ ᏍᎦᏚᎩ ᎠᎴ ᎠᏴᏫᏯ ᎠᏰᎵ ᎤᏙᏢᏒᎢ”

Ꮎ ᏗᏓᏂᎳᏫᎪ ᏃᎴ ᎠᏂᏐ ᏗᎦᎨᏑᏰᏓ ᏚᏂᎷᏨᎢ, ᏚᎾᎵᎮᎵᏍᏓᏅ ᎠᎴ ᎤᏂᏬᏂᏒ Ꮎ ᎠᏂᎫᏍᏛᏍᎬ ᏚᏂᎶᏫᏍᏓᏁᎲᎢ Ꮎ SAIGE ᏥᎾᏅᏛᏁᎰᎢ ᏗᏍᏕᎵᏗ ᎠᏂᏴᏫᏯ ᏍᎦᏚᎩᎢ, Ꮎ ᎨᏥᏠᏯᏍᏗᎲ ᎤᎬᏫᏳᎯ Bill John Baker, ᎫᏐ ᎠᏰᏟ ᎤᏙᏢᏒ ᎤᎬᏫᏳᎯ James Floyd ᎠᎴ ᎠᎦᏌᏌ ᎠᏰᏟ ᎤᏙᏢᏒ ᎤᎬᏫᏳᎯ Geoffrey Standing Bear.

ᎤᎪᏓ ᏣᏕᎶᎰᏍᏗ ᏱᎩ ᏪᏓ: www. saige.org

News

BY STAFF REPORTS
04/27/2017 04:00 PM
TAHLEQUAH, Okla. – Six Cherokee Nation citizens, five of whom are CN citizens, recently formed an AAPC chapter in Tahlequah. The AAPC is the nation’s largest training and credentialing association for the business side of medicine. Those forming the chapter are CN citizens Melinda Mefford, Janice Horton, Jaycie Robbins-Bogart, Barbara Weavel and Deanna Chandler, as well as CN employee Gina Fletcher. Fletcher serves as the chapter president while Mefford is vice president. Horton is secretary, and Robbins-Boggart is treasurer. Weavel serves as the education officer, while Chandler covers new member development. “The new chapter was requested because local residents who are members of AAPC had to drive to Tulsa, Fayetteville (Arkansas) or Fort Smith (Arkansas) for monthly meetings,” Fletcher said. “These meetings provide not only networking with other coders and billers, but also provide continuing education units at no cost. These CEUs are necessary to maintain AAPC certification. We’re so excited to be able to offer these opportunities to our local membership.” According to a press release from the new chapter, local chapters provide an opportunity for health care professionals to share common interests, questions, information and concerns. Local chapters also provide AAPC with feedback on programs, trainings and current trends facing the health care community, it states. “AAPC local chapters are crucial for our industry; they’re at the grass roots where true networking and education take place,” AAPC CEO Jason VandenAdkker said. “Our members receive assistance and encouragement from those who have ‘done it’ before them. We’re very proud of our local chapters officers who volunteer to promote the profession and give back to others because someone gave to them.” AAPC has more than 500 chapters across the county. In addition, the chapters provide an education forum, offer networking opportunities and establish an environment where less-experienced members may interact, learn and be mentored by those with more experience. For more information about AAPC certification and local chapters, visit <a href="http://www.aapc.com" target="_blank">www.aapc.com</a>.
BY STAFF REPORTS
04/27/2017 12:15 PM
CATOOSA, Okla. – Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tulsa recently joined the ranks of the best hospitality establishments in the country when the American Automobile Association honored it with its Four Diamond Rating. Cherokee Nation Entertainment’s largest entertainment property is now recognized as one of North America’s select accommodations. Fewer than 6 percent of the 28,000 AAA-approved and diamond-rated establishments in the nation receive the prestigious distinction. “This honor affirms our commitment to remain a premier entertainment destination,” Martin Madewell, Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tulsa senior director of hospitality services, said. “We are proud to see the dedicated efforts of our staff be nationally recognized and ranked alongside the most elite establishments in the U.S.” According to AAA, a Four Diamond property is one that is “refined, stylish with upscale physical attributes, extensive amenities and high degree of hospitality, service and attention to detail.” AAA, the world’s largest publisher of travel information and one of the world’s largest leisure travel agencies, rates more properties than any other rating entity. Lodging establishments and restaurants receive a rating of one to five diamonds. AAA uses full-time, professionally trained evaluators to inspect each property annually. Diamond ratings appear in online travel guides, on the club’s website and via the AAA Mobile app as well as the printed Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri & Oklahoma TourBook® guide. For more information about AAA and Diamond Ratings, visit <a href="https://www.ok.aaa.com" target="_blank">https://www.ok.aaa.com</a>.
BY STAFF REPORTS
04/26/2017 04:00 PM
CATOOSA, Okla. – Restoring Identities after Sexual Exploitation, RISE, will have its second annual “Rise to Freedom Gala” on June 2 at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tulsa. The event begins at 6 p.m. and will host guest speakers Kylla Lanier, “Truckers Against Trafficking” deputy director, and sex traffic survivor Dr. Amanda Reed. Tickets for the event are $100 and can be purchased at <a href="https://squareup.com/store/rise-corp/" target="_blank">https://squareup.com/store/rise-corp/</a>. RISE was created after Cherokee Nation citizen Keri Spencer’s daughter asked her if they could help those who have been sex trafficked so they created a church program to educate children and parents on what to look for regarding sex trafficking. From that, Spencer spearheaded RISE. “RISE is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit. I actually am the founder…and serve as the executive director,” she said. “RISE exists to open a long-term residential facility for girls in Oklahoma that are ages 12 to 18 who have been sex trafficked or commercially sexually exploited.” For more information about RISE or to donate, visit <a href="http://www.riseshelter.org" target="_blank">www.riseshelter.org</a>. For more information about the event, call 918-822-3539 or email <a href="mailto: kerispencer.rise@gmail.com">kerispencer.rise@gmail.com</a>.
BY STAFF REPORTS
04/25/2017 03:00 PM
LONGMONT, Colo. – First Nations Development Institute on April 20 published a report that clears up a longstanding “urban legend” that has had a negative impact on Native communities. The report “Twice Invisible: Understanding Rural Native America” challenges the commonly held belief that the majority of American Indians and Alaska Natives live in cities and urban areas. The report looks closely at U.S. Census data and uses a definition of “rural” areas developed by the Housing Assistance Council that is calculated with a formula that takes into account population and housing density. Using this definition, First Nations’ researchers found that 54 percent of American Indian and Alaska Native people live in rural and small-town areas on or near reservations, contrary to common belief. “An outdated measure of ‘urban’ areas has been used by the Census Bureau for a long time,” First Nations President and CEO Michael E. Roberts sad. “Their definition of ‘urban’ includes small towns of less than 4,000 people. We felt the need to clear up some misconceptions and, in doing so, hopefully improve the distribution of resources to these rural and small-town areas. This is part of our longstanding work of elevating the Native voice and working to change the narrative about American Indian and Alaska Native people. We don’t want rural communities to be left out.”?? First Nations Associate Director of Development Eileen Egan said the institute kept hearing from different foundations that they were using the statistic that 72 percent of Native Americans live in urban areas, which is often reported by researchers. “That didn’t sound right to us. We felt a responsibility to dig deeper since it impacts the distribution of resources. We know that most of our grantees and many of our partners reside and work in remote, small-town areas that we, or anyone, would never define as ‘urban,’” she said. Raymond Foxworth, First Nations vice president of Grantmaking, Development and Communications, said First Nations’ mission has always been to work with rural American Indian and Alaska Native communities, which are often left out of mainstream funders’ program areas. “The erroneous 72 percent statistic was being widely used to direct money away from these rural areas, where the populations often struggle with higher poverty rates and many other economic and social disparities,” Foxworth said. “We felt it was important to understand where this number was coming from and how accurate it was. We feel it is much more accurate to say that 54 percent of American Indians and Alaska Natives, or a majority, live in rural and small-town areas.” ?? In addition, the report found that the majority of American Indians and Alaska Natives, or 68 percent, live on or near their home reservations. “We understand the challenges associated with using Census data to understand rural Native America, but we believe that only with carefully analyzed data can we have an accurate understanding of rural Native America, and make rural Native America visible again,” Sarah Dewees, First Nations senior director of Research, Policy and Asset-Building Programs, said. “We hope this report will be useful to funders and nonprofit staff who are designing programs to effectively serve Native American people.”?? The full report can be downloaded at <a href="http://www.firstnations.org/knowledge-center/strengthening-nonprofits" target="_blank">http://www.firstnations.org/knowledge-center/strengthening-nonprofits</a>.
BY STACIE GUTHRIE
Reporter – @cp_sguthrie
04/25/2017 08:15 AM
CATOOSA, Okla. – According to an economic impact study, the Cherokee Nation’s financial influence on Oklahoma exceeded $2.03 billon in 2016, growing from $1.5 billion in 2014. Dr. Russell Evans, an Economic Impact Group principal and Oklahoma City University assistant professor of economics, conducted the review. He released his findings during an April 21 forum at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tulsa. “What we find is that the Cherokee Nation operations here in northeast Oklahoma in 2016 had an over $2 billon impact on northeastern Oklahoma. Supporting nearly 18,000 jobs, just under $800 million dollars in income here in northeast Oklahoma,” he said. “It’s a tremendous source…and perhaps even more valuable given the general state of the state’s economy last year.” The study shows the tribe employs more than 11,000 direct and contract employees across the United States, with a majority being in Oklahoma. “$500 million is being paid out in northeastern Oklahoma to workers of Cherokee Nation Businesses and Cherokee Nation government offices. They’re taking back to their communities and spending in their local communities,” Evans said. “The Cherokee Nation directly produces or directly buys from local vendors almost $1.5 billon worth of goods. These are the revenues that are generated by this operation, the Cherokee Nation as well as purchases being made by the businesses and government operations of local vendors. So nearly $1.5 billon in direct economic activity in this area of Oklahoma we can trace back to the Cherokee Nation.” Evans said the “significance” of the tribe’s economic impact might affect economic development patterns “well into the future.” “I want to kind of keep in the back of your mind as you think about the true significance of the economic impact of the Cherokee Nation operations, it’s not just what the Cherokee Nation is doing today from who they employee and what they buy, but it’s also what I suspect we’ll see is that it’s also going to affect patterns of economic development well into the future,” he said. During the forum, Principal Chief Bill John Baker said it’s “amazing” to see the impact the tribe is generating in the state. He added that approximately 40 years ago, when the tribe re-organized as a government, the CN was producing an impact of $0 compared to the approximately $2 billon it produced in 2016. “Five short years ago we rolled out an economic impact on Oklahoma of the Cherokee Nation of almost $1 billon. How amazing that in 40 short years we went from $0 economic impact to a billon dollars. Today you have an economic impact statement…that says the Cherokee Nation had an economic impact last year of over $2 billon,” he said. According to a CN press release, studies of tribe’s economic impact have been conducted every two years since 2010. Reports from 2010, 2012 and 2014 showed the tribe’s economic impact as $1 billion, $1.3 billion and $1.55 billion, respectively. For more information, visit <a href="http://www.cherokeenationimpact.com" target="_blank">www.cherokeenationimpact.com</a>. <strong>Total compact for 14-county jurisdiction, according to <a href="http://www.cherokeenationimpact.com" target="_blank">www.cherokeenationimpact.com</a>.</strong> County Output Jobs Income Adair $67.9 million 902 $37.1 million Cherokee $275.9 million 5,910 $220.9 million Craig $14.3 million 273 $10.5 million Delaware $186 million 1,371 $56 million Mayes $163 million 781 $24.8 million McIntosh $1.8 million 13 $696,672 Muskogee $113 million 952 $40.3 million Nowata $26.4 million 263 $10.2 million Ottawa $3.2 million 53 $989,474 Rogers $386.3 million 2,923 $135 million Sequoyah $152.1 million 1,200 $49.8 million Tulsa $592.8 million 2,626 $181.1 million Wagoner $6.6 million 48 $1.2 million Washington $48.8 million 475 $16.8 million
BY ROGER GRAHAM
Media Specialist – @cp_rgraham
04/24/2017 12:00 PM
TAHLEQUAH, Okla. – Native Americans representing several tribes visited downtown on April 8 for an intertribal powwow at the Cherokee Nation Capitol. Cherokee Nation citizen JoKay Dowell, who came with family members, called the powwow a Native-based social occasion because powwows are not culturally Cherokee. “Cherokees have adopted it in recent generations, so there’s a lot of Cherokees here as well as Kiowas, Navajo, Comanches, Quapaw, Muskogee, Sac and Fox, all kinds of tribes.” Native vendors also set up at the event selling assorted items such as beaded necklaces and jewelry until the powwow closed at sundown.