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Tribal Observer Issue: November 1, 2005

Saginaw Chippewa membership to elect new Tribal Council on Nov. 8

The Saginaw Chippewa membership—representing all three districts—will elect a new Tribal Council as eligible voters head to the polls Nov. 8.

Voting will take place from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the Saginaw Chippewa Public Safety Building for District 1. A box for absentee ballots concerning District 3 (At-Large) will also be available at the Mt. Pleasant site. District 2 (Saganing) Tribal members will be able to cast their votes from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the Saganing Outreach Center in Standish.

District 1 candidate profiles

Meet the Candidates for District 1 and 3 on Nov. 6 from 6 to 8 p.m. in the Tribal Gymnasium

District 1 voters will be able to vote for up to 10 of the following 20 candidates (incumbents designated with an atresic):

Charmaine Benz*, Lorna Call, Federico Cantu Jr.*, Adelaide Davis, Raymond “Archie” Davis, Timothy Davis, Audrey Falcon*, Michael Floyd Sr.*, Lindy Hunt, Brent Jackson*, Darryl Jackson, Delmar Jackson Sr.*, Delores Jackson, Josephine Jackson, Maynard Kahgegab Jr., Jeanette Leaureaux, Ruth Moses*, Milton “Beaver” Pelcher, Diana Quigno-Grundahl* and Bernard Sprague*.

District 2 (Saganing) candidate profile

District 2 (Saganing) voters have one name on the ballot: Ronald Nelson.

District 3 (At-Large) candidate profiles

Meet the Candidates for District 1 and 3 on Nov. 6 from 6 to 8 p.m. in the Tribal Gymnasium

District 3 (At-Large) voters have the following five candidates to choose from for one seat on Tribal Council (incumbents designated with an atresic): Frank Cloutier, Bonnie Ekdahl, Greg Falsetta, Damian Fisher and Michele Stanley*.

(Editor’s note: The following candidates responded to the Tribal Observer’s request for a personal profile on their Tribal Council aspirations. The prospective Tribal Council representatives were asked why they are running; what they hope to accomplish and how they feel they could make a difference while serving on Tribal Council. Of the seven District 1 candidates that did not respond, Timothy Davis said he would decline the opportunity to participate. Phone messages were left and/or personal contact was made with Lorna Call, Darryl Jackson, Delmar Jackson Sr., Maynard Kahgegab Jr., Milton “Beaver” Pelcher and Diana Quigno-Grundahl. With all respects to time considerations, personal health or other commitments, the Tribal Observer strived to make sure all were included in this special feature.)

Saginaw Chippewa Tribe to lodge lawsuit against state over rez boundaries

The Saginaw Chippewa Tribal Council approved on Oct. 19 the filing of litigation against the state of Michigan in federal court to resolve an ongoing dispute between the Tribe and the State over the Tribe’s reservation boundaries.

Tribe plans to build casino near airport; Sag Chips oppose

ROMULUS(AP)—With the roar of jet engines in the background, a northern Michigan American Indian Tribe recently announced plans to build a $243 million casino and hotel complex just north of Detroit Metropolitan Airport.

Contract terminated

In an effort to streamline and consolidate the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe of Michigan’s Legal Department, an outside attorney’s contract has been terminated.

The contract for attorney Bryant Rogers—of the law firm of Roth, VanAmberg, Rogers, Ortiz and Yepa—was terminated on Oct. 21. The firm was originally hired to represent the Tribe on Dec. 12, 2001.

New president looks forward to academic challenges

Welcome to the Saginaw Chippewa Tribal College.

I am Dr. Karen Radell, the new president, but I am not new to the college. I worked on the original self-study for accreditation candidacy in 2002 and I was adjunct faculty before that.

My Ph.D. is from Kent State University in Ohio and I came to Mt. Pleasant in 1987 to teach in the English Department at Central Michigan University.

Ekdahl earns respect

Central Michigan University football fans have had to check the roster in their gameday program to keep up with all the players rotating in and out on the Chippewas’ defensive line this season. As many as 10 different players have seen action on the defensive front this fall, and among old reliables like Daniel Bazuin and Tony Thompson have been a number of new faces, including redshirt freshman Ronnie Ekdahl.

New slot technology to enhance customer service at Soaring Eagle

Following the national gaming trend of a coinless slot floor, Soaring Eagle officials are utilizing ticket-in, ticket-out technology to enhance customer service while reducing internal costs.

There are currently 4,392 slot machines at Soaring Eagle, with slightly less than half already converted to being coinless, according Director of Slot Operations Chris Bailey. Their goal is to be 100 percent ticket-in, ticket-out by September 2006.

Veterans Feast planned for Nov. 5

Veterans Day—Nov. 11—honors those who have served in the U.S. military.

The Anishnabe Ogitchedaw Veterans and Warrior Society will recognize all veterans while paying tribute to Civil War veterans with a feast on Nov. 5 at 6 p.m. in the Swan Creek Black River Rooms at the Soaring Eagle Resort.

Keynote speaker John Bailey will speak about the Michigan Sharpshooters Company K, while “Honoring Our Civil War Vets,” during the event.

A Veterans Benefits Fair will also take place on Nov. 5 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Swan Creek Black River Rooms at the Soaring Eagle Resort. Additional information on the benefits fair is located on page 9.

Funds dedicated to build community youth facility

Discussion regarding a new Tribal school and community recreation center has circulated on the Isabella Reservation for years, but Tribal Chief Audrey Falcon and Council are committed to make these speculations a reality with funds from the Tribe’s former lobbying firm.

Four election protests dismissed or denied

Two protests filed over the recent primary election have been denied with another pair being dismissed.

Election Appeals Judge Vanya S. Hogen dismissed protests filed by “Members of the Anishinabe Voices,” as well as District 1 Tribal member and candidate Craig Graveratte because of pending legal action. Both protests concerned having a candidate on the ballot that did not submit to a hair follicle drug test.

Delores Jackson—who also filed a protest over the election—has sought a temporary preliminary injunction in an attempt to circumvent and abolish mandatory drug testing for Tribal Council hopefuls. The matter—originally ruled on Sept. 8 in Saginaw Chippewa Community Court—went to the Saginaw Chippewa Appellate Court who remanded the case back to the lower court.