Chief’s Report: Driving change – EBCI’s advocacy push in legislation

by Feb 28, 2024NEWS ka-no-he-da0 comments

Leaders of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians met with North Carolina leaders recently in Raleigh, N.C. They are shown, left to right, front row – Sheyahshe Littledave, EBCI public relations officers; Bill Taylor, EBCI governmental affairs liaison; Principal Chief Michell Hicks; N.C. Governor Roy Cooper; Tsisqwohi (Birdtown) Rep. Boyd Owle; TCGE Board Chair Tommy Lambert; TCGE Board Member Skooter McCoy; back row – Aniwodihi (Painttown) Rep. Michael Stamper; Tribal Council Chairman Mike Parker; and Paxton Myers, EBCI chief of staff. (Photo courtesy of EBCI public relations)




During the past week, I had the privilege to journey to Raleigh, N.C. alongside my staff, Tribal Council Chairman, and Tribal Council members. Our goal was to engage with North Carolina legislators, sharing insights and priorities of our new administration and outlining the future stance of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians (EBCI) on critical issues.

Our day began with a meeting with Attorney General and Gubernatorial Candidate Josh Stein, followed by a session with N.C. House Minority Leader Robert Reives. Throughout these discussions, we delved into various topics, including updates on critical issues such as healthcare, which holds significant importance for our tribal members and extends its impact beyond the Qualla Boundary.

We met with Governor Roy Cooper, where we presented him with general tribal updates that included the proposed Arthur Wade Bridge, WWII Veteran Reuben Taylor’s housing situation, and highlighting the strong relationship of our tribal government. The objective of this trip was to strengthen our connections with various North Carolina legislators and collaborate towards enhancing the well-being of not only our EBCI enrolled members but all North Carolinians.

We express our gratitude to the North Carolina legislators for their time and look forward to continuing our partnership in the future. It is our hope that as we continue our legislative efforts, we ensure that EBCI enrolled members remain well-informed and that we maintain transparency within the community regarding our visits and advocacy efforts on behalf of our tribe.