Kidwell wins runoff for At-Large Tribal Council seat

Johnny Jack Kidwell

TAHLEQUAH – According to unofficial results, Johnny Jack Kidwell, of Tulsa, has secured the Tribal Council’s At-Large seat during the Cherokee Nation’s July 24 runoff election against Kyle Haskins.

According to unofficial Election Commission results, Kidwell received 1,525 votes, or 60.3%, to Haskins 1,004 votes, or 39.7%.

Voting in the race consisted of absentee ballots and early walk-in voting.

According to his campaign website, Kidwell’s platform solutions included elder care, health care, mental health, education and training.

“As your councilor I will work diligently to explore new funding streams and allocate appropriate resources toward establishing state-of-the-art senior living communities and elder care facilities that can be accessible to citizens living at-large,” he states on his campaign website.

Kidwell also states he would work to have at-large citizens on equal footing as in-jurisdiction CN citizens with regards to access to health care.

“I will not rest until at-large citizens enjoy the same benefits, opportunities and access to our tribe’s medical facilities as those living inside the jurisdiction,” he states on the website.  

He said he also plans to “fight” for transparency and accountability in all government levels and functions.

Another promise in his platform is the continuance of cultural preservation.

“Growing up in Spavinaw, Mayes County, cultural events were common and held at our school,” he said. “I cherish the positive impact this has on my life and I’ll fight for the increased funding for cultural outreach specifically directed at our school-aged kids.”

On election night, Kidwell gave thanks in a Facebook post for the support he received to put him in the At-Large seat.

“I look forward to the years ahead as we work together for a strong future for all Cherokee citizens,” he said.

The EC is expected to certify election results at a later date after all races have been determined. All winning candidates are expected to be sworn in on Aug. 14.