Tyler Thomas is the Interim Executive Editor of the Cherokee Phoenix. He currently lives in the Welling community in Cherokee County, but calls Stilwell, Oklahoma his hometown. After graduating Stilwell High School, Tyler attended the University of Oklahoma, where he received a Bachelor’s of Arts in Journalism from the Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communication in 2012. He also graduated from the American Indian Journalism Institute at the University of South Dakota in 2011.
Tyler is a member of the Native American Journalists Association as well as the Society for News Design. He was also a member of Leadership Tahlequah Class XIX.
He is married to Madison Thomas. The couple has two daughters, Evan and Chandler.
Mark Dreadfulwater has worked for the Cherokee Phoenix since 2006. He began as a graphic designer, a position that exposed him to all factions of the organization. Upon completing his journalism degree from Northeastern State University in 2009, he was promoted to media specialist, switching his main focus to videography and visual journalism while maintaining his design duties. In 2012, he was promoted to multimedia editor.
He is a member of Native American Journalists Association, Society of Professional Journalists and Society for News Design.
Travis Snell has worked for the Cherokee Phoenix since 2000. He began as a staff writer, a position that allowed him to win numerous writing awards from the Native American Journalists Association, including the Richard LaCourse Award for best investigative story in 2003. He was promoted to assistant editor in 2006, switching his focus from writing to story development, editing, design and other duties.
He is a member of NAJA, as well as the Society of Professional Journalists, Investigative Reporters and Editors and Society for News Design.
Travis earned his journalism degree with a print emphasis in 1999 from Oklahoma City University. While at OCU, he served as editor, assistant editor and sports reporter for the school’s newspaper.
He is married to Lisa Snell. The couple has two children, Sadie and Swimmer.
Will Chavez is a Cherokee/San Felipe Pueblo Indian who has worked in the newspaper and public relations field for 25 years. During that time he has performed public relations work for the Cherokee Nation and has been a writer, reporter and photographer for the Cherokee Advocate and Cherokee Phoenix newspapers.
For many years he has been advocate for Indian rights and has written numerous articles and editorials on Cherokee history.
He is a member of the Native American Journalists Association, an organization made up of professional Native journalists from throughout North America and Canada. He is also board member for the Oklahoma Chapter of the Trail of Tears Association.
Growing up northeastern Oklahoma, Will learned the language, traditions and culture of the Cherokee people from his Cherokee mother and grandparents. He also appreciates his father’s culture and when possible attends annual traditional dances held on the San Felipe Reservation near Albuquerque, N.M.
Lindsey Bark grew up and resides in the Tagg Flats community in Delaware County. She graduated magna cum laude from Northeastern State University in 2012 with a bachelor’s degree in mass communication, emphasizing in journalism.
She started working for the Cherokee Phoenix in 2016. Working for the Cherokee Phoenix, Lindsey hopes to gain as much knowledge as she can about the Cherokee culture and people. She is a full-blood Cherokee and a citizen of the Cherokee Nation.
She is a member of the Native American Journalists Association and has won three awards for the Giduwa Cherokee News and one award for with the Cherokee Phoenix.
Samantha Cochran joined the Cherokee Phoenix as an advertising representative in 2014 and has worked in advertising and marketing since graduating from Gore High School in 2005.
Being a Cherokee Nation citizen, she competed in Cherokee quiz bowls throughout high school and has taken Cherokee classes regarding culture, people and language. While working for the Cherokee Phoenix she has broadened her knowledge about the Cherokee people and culture.
Samantha is married to Chris Cochran and they have four children: Tucker, Alex, Ashlyn and Summer.
Terris Howard is from Welling, Okla. She graduated magna cum laude from Northeastern State University in 2017 with a bachelor’s degree in visual communication and a minor in business. While in college, she worked for Cherokee Nation Businesses. She started working for the Cherokee Phoenix as an advertising representative in 2018.
She is married to Jeremy Howard. They have two children, Lyllyann and Keigen.