COMMENTARY: Read the Preamble for the proposed EBCI Constitution

by Jan 23, 2021OPINIONS



On behalf of the EBCI Constitution Committee


The Constitution Committee for the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, Inc. (ECBI) will submit sections of the draft Constitution to citizens of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians for community review of the section and requests that community members submit their responses to the Committee. Your input will be reviewed by the committee for consideration for inclusion in the final draft to potentially be approved, by registered voters, in the general election to be held in September 2021.

This first section released for review contains only the preamble. A preamble goes before any other information in a governing document and it serves as an introduction and includes its reason and purpose for the Constitution.  In addition, since this is not the first attempt to create a Constitution for our tribe, this draft of the Preamble includes previous efforts and references to documents reviewed to develop this document as the Constitution for the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, Inc.

The draft preamble is included below for tribal member response.  There are two ways that you may submit your responses now to the Committee: For more information on the preamble and entire proposed constitution access the website, There is an access portal where you may provide tribal membership verification which will allow you to submit your ideas for the constitution draft. You may also send your ideas for the constitution to Lloyd Arneach via email. He will also provide instructions for you to attend weekly constitution committee meetings on Microsoft Team (Lloyd Arneach at

The Constitution Committee thanks you and encourages all EBCI citizens to be a part in drafting this historical document by participating in its creation and registering to vote to approve the final draft of the Constitution.  It is rare that anyone has the opportunity to create a document that determines how they want to be governed and the freedom to ensure its approval.  Thank you for your valuable participation in creating our governing document.

Proposed Constitution


“We, the Principal People, the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, acknowledging the Creator, being determined to maintain our sovereignty, hold fast to our ancestral homelands and our natural resources; and, to establish justice, ensure tranquility, promote our culture, our education, our  language and our common welfare; and, to secure for ourselves and our posterity the blessings of liberty, do ordain and establish this Constitution of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. Herein we acknowledge the foundation laid by the 1875 Lloyd Welch Constitution, Chapter 207 of the 1887 North Carolina State Charter and the 1986 Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians Charter and Governing Document and declare that this Constitution supersedes these and all other   previous governing documents.”