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Tribal leaders sworn into Minnesota Chippewa Tribe executive committee

On Friday at the Fortune Bay Resort Casino on the Bois Forte Reservation, leaders of the Minnesota Chippewa Tribe gathered to swear in newly elected tribal officials at their regular quarterly meeting. (Submitted photo)

VERMILLION—On Friday at the Fortune Bay Resort Casino on the Bois Forte Reservation, leaders of the Minnesota Chippewa Tribe gathered to swear in newly elected tribal officials at its regular quarterly meeting.

Elections took place in April and June on each of the member reservations and elected officials were sworn into their tribal offices in July.

Tribal Executive Committee board members sworn in at Friday's meeting included:

• Faron Jackson Sr., Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe chairman,

• Cathy Chavers, Bois Forte Band chairwoman,

• Kevin R. Dupuis Sr., Fond Du Lac Band chairman,

• Norman W. Deschampe, Grand Portage Band chairman,

• Melanie Benjamin, Mille Lacs Band chief executive.

Terry Tibbetts Sr., White Earth Band chairman, was unable to attend Friday's meeting and will be sworn in at an upcoming special meeting. Selection of the officer positions was also postponed until that time. Current TEC officers will continue their job duties until the special meeting is convened.

The Minnesota Chippewa Tribe consists of the Bois Forte, Fond Du Lac, Grand Portage, Leech Lake, Mille Lacs and White Earth reservations. The MCT was created in 1934 and formally recognized by the Secretary of the Interior in 1936. It serves as a centralized governing body for the six tribes, representing an estimated total population of 41,000 Native Americans.

The Tribal Executive Committee is composed of the chairman and secretary-treasurer from each of the six member bands. The executive committee selects from within the group a president, vice president, secretary and treasurer for two-year terms. The remaining officials act as board members. The committee has four quarterly meetings each year.

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