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CHOCTAW, MISSISSIPPI - Phyliss J. Anderson was officially sworn in as the new tribal chief of the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians in an Inauguration Ceremony, Tuesday at The Arena at Golden Moon. The day also marked a historic moment in the history of the tribe as Chief Anderson is the first woman chief in Mississippi Choctaw history.
The day was packed with inauguration activities as she was officially sworn in at 9:30 at the Tribal Council Hall. An inaugural parade down Highway 16 West to the Arena at the Golden Moon followed the swearing-in. After the parade, guests attended an Inauguration ceremony where Chief Anderson took the Oath of Office in front of standing room only crowds.
Oath of Office
"My Choctaw people, our goals are the same. We want our children to graduate from tribal schools equipped with skills to pursue their dreams in the 21st century. We want our Choctaw Health Center to dispense the best care possible. We want to preserve our language and culture. We want to continue to expand the role the tribe has as an engine for economic growth in the state of Mississippi. These goals are within our grasp BUT we MUST pursue them as one people," she said.
"We must be patient: It takes time to regain our path. But there is one thing that is ours alone, that no outside force can control and no power on Earth can take from us. It is the most powerful weapon on our journey and that is the spirit of optimism. It is part of our inheritance and is here for the taking! Abraham Lincoln was so right when he said, 'A house divided against itself cannot stand. '"
"Our Goals are the Same"
"Let's pledge today to start our journey anew - let's put our differences aside, join hands, and freed from intimidation that has bound us during recent years, again seek the path forward. It is not so distant and is reachable," said Chief Anderson.
Chief Anderson is fluent in the Choctaw language. She has more than 26 years of experience with tribal government management. She is committed to building tribal financial stability; operating an accountable, responsible and transparent government; and building the quality of life on the reservation.
She has played an integral role in the Tribe's success while serving as Secretary/Treasurer for the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians. Chief Anderson draws on a wide variety of experience. She has served on a number of governing boards and committees for multi-million dollar enterprises including those in the tribal manufacturing, tribal government contracting, and the gaming and hospitality industry.
Chief Anderson's experience includes board and committee representation for Tribal Tax Commissioner, Choctaw Resort Development Enterprise, Chahta Enterprise, Choctaw Development Enterprise, First American Printing and Direct Mail Enterprise, Choctaw Shopping Center Enterprise, Leake County Development Association, Leake County Foundation, Mississippi United Methodist Conference, United Methodist Church - Choctaw Mission, John Memorial United Methodist Church - Finance Chair, Choctaw Business Loans Review Committee, Tribal Government Services 401k Fiduciary Committee and Tribal Council Committees for Children and Youth, Education, Recreation, Culture, Government Affairs, Lobbying, Public Relations and Politics, and Human Resources.
Chief Anderson is married to Ricky Anderson, Sr. and is the mother to three, stepmother to four and grandmother of four.
posted October 5, 2011 8:50 am edt
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