Cherokee Nation

Cherokee Nation leaders are seeing progress on issues at the federal level, but that doesn’t mean they’ve turned a blind eye to the state capitol.

First up is the special session to redraw state legislative and congressional district boundaries, which starts Nov. 15. Cherokee Nation Director of Government Affairs and Cherokee Nation Businesses Senior Vice President of Government Relations Kim Teehee said the tribe’s geographic information systems team has analyzed various redistricting proposals.

Cherokee Nation

TAHLEQUAH, Okla. (AP) — The Oklahoma-based Cherokee Nation said Wednesday that it has reached 400,000 tribal citizens and expects to become the most populous indigenous tribe in the United States again.

Cherokee Nation

Cherokee Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr. emphasized his commitment to achieving "complete sovereignty" in his annual State of the Nation address on Saturday.

Cherokee Nation

Cherokee Nation announced Thursday it will donate Tribally-manufactured masks to any public school districts within its reservation boundaries that require them to be worn, despite a state law signed by Gov. Kevin Stitt in May that makes implementing that public health measure illegal.


Cherokee Nation and Spartan College of Aeronautics and Technology have entered into a formal education agreement.

The partnership will help Cherokee Nation citizens access training for careers as pilots or aviation technicians. Spartan Executive Vice President Dan Bregman said there’s a definite need for pilots, and the COVID-19 pandemic has only exacerbated the problem.


A U.S. Senate committee advanced a pair of bills last week to help preserve Native languages, including one named for a renowned Cherokee linguist.

Hawaii Sen. Brian Schatz is a co-author of S.1402, the Durbin Feeling Native American Languages Act. It would direct the president to keep tabs on agencies’s compliance with existing law recognizing Natives's right to use their own language and implement surveys of revitalization programs every five years to see where resources are needed most.

Cherokee Nation

Applications are scheduled to open Tuesday for Cherokee Nation's clothing assistance program, which provides $150 for new clothes for school-aged Cherokee citizens.

Councilor Joe Deere

The Cherokee Nation Tribal Councilor representing the district that includes much of the historic Greenwood neighborhood destroyed in the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre says he believes reparations are due to the attack's survivors and descendants.

Councilor Joe Deere welcomed attendees of the Black Wall Street Legacy Festival's main event on Sunday at the Oklahoma State University - Tulsa campus to the Cherokee Nation reservation.

Cherokee Nation

The Cherokee Nation Tribal Council on Thursday evening approved a spending proposal from Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr. that will use part of the Tribe's $1.8 billion in funding under President Biden's American Rescue Plan COVID-19 relief package to provide direct payments of $2,000 to Cherokee citizens, regardless of residency or income.

Cherokee Nation/Osiyo TV

Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr. testified before the U.S. Senate Committee on Indian Affairs Wednesday to express support for a piece of language preservation legislation named for the late Cherokee linguist Durbin Feeling.

U.S. Department of the Interior

U.S. Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland approved on Wednesday a new constitution for the Cherokee Nation, one that ensures full citizenship for descendants of Freedmen.

Haaland was confirmed as Interior secretary March 15, and the agency said Cherokee Nation submitted the constitution for approval March 12.

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Two of the most powerful Native American tribes in Oklahoma said Monday they’ve reached an agreement on federal legislation that would address concerns over criminal jurisdiction in light of a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision.

Cherokee Nation/Osiyo TV

The chair and ranking member of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs on Thursday introduced a piece of legislation meant to help with Native American language preservation efforts, named for late Cherokee linguist Durbin Feeling.

Cherokee Nation

Cherokee Nation on Monday held an unveiling for three new electric buses, the first of several events in a week of Earth Day recognitions.

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The U.S. Congress must take action to allow American Indian tribes to compact with state governments to prosecute crimes in Indian Country, Cherokee Nation Attorney General Sara Hill said Tuesday.

Cherokee Nation

Cherokee Nation on Thursday opened a new Tahlequah facility for its ONE FIRE Victims Services program, corresponding with the beginning of Sexual Assault Awareness Month.

"Our move to our new facility is going to be great for us," said interim director Shawna Duch. "We've got a more secure location, we've got a bigger location, we've got an office that looks like home. It's going to be comfortable for a survivor to come in and get services here."

Courtesy Cherokee Nation

Following in the footsteps of some other Oklahoma tribes, the Cherokee Nation announced Thursday it will now schedule vaccination appointments for anyone who wants one, regardless of their Tribal citizenship status or even what state they live in.

“Our Cherokee Nation health team was extremely successful in ensuring we reached our most vulnerable populations, including Cherokee elders and first responders, when our first COVID-19 vaccines arrived in December,” Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr. said in a statement.

Cherokee Nation

The first confirmed COVID-19 death in Oklahoma -- that of 55-year-old Tulsa pastor Merle Dry -- was reported on March 18, 2020. 

A Cherokee citizen, Dry was remembered along with 106 other Cherokees known to have been killed by the virus at a Thursday ceremony in Tahlequah exactly one year after he became the first fatality.

NDN Collective

Appearing on a livestream event Monday shortly after her historic confirmation to lead the Department of the Interior, Rep. Deb Haaland (D-NM) shared her first reaction to learning the vote was official.

"My sisters are here and they're cooking, and we're going to have dinner in tonight," Haaland told viewers of the event, hosted by advocacy and activist organization NDN Collective.

Google Maps

The Cherokee Nation announced Tuesday it has opened COVID-19 vaccine eligibility to individuals who live within their reservation boundaries, including non-Natives.

The White House

Cherokee Nation's nominee to represent the tribe as a delegate to the U.S. House of Representatives says President Joe Biden's early actions since taking office in January are encouraging signs for how Indian Country will fare under his administration. 

Cherokee Nation High Court Orders Term 'By Blood' Removed

Feb 23, 2021
Cherokee Nation

TAHLEQUAH, Okla. (AP) — The Cherokee Nation Supreme Court ruled Monday the term ‘by blood’ is void and should be removed from the tribe’s laws and Constitution.

The decision was in response to a 2017 federal case that determined descendants of Black slaves, known as Freedmen, who once were owned by members of the Cherokee Nation have a right to tribal citizenship.

Chief Hoskin: Time For Jeep To End Use Of Tribe's Name

Feb 22, 2021
Matt Trotter / KWGS

TAHLEQUAH, Okla. (AP) — It is time for Jeep to stop using the Cherokee Nation’s name on its Cherokee and Grand Cherokee SUVs, the chief of the Oklahoma-based tribe said.

Chief Chuck Hoskin, Jr. said in a statement first reported by Car & Driver magazine that he believes corporations and sports teams should stop using Native American names, images and mascots as nicknames or on their products.

“I’m sure this comes from a place that is well-intended, but it does not honor us by having our name plastered on the side of a car,” Hoskin said.


Cherokee Nation's nominee to serve as the tribe's delegate to the U.S. House of Representatives is hopeful she could be seated in Washington soon.

"I anticipate this administration supporting a delegate to Congress and I anticipate us getting seated this year -- in this session, knock on wood," Kimberly Teehee, Cherokee Nation's director of government relations, said on a Thursday virtual forum hosted by Cherokee Nation Community and Cultural Outreach.

Stitt Seeks Negotiations With Tribal Leaders

Jan 22, 2021
File Photo / Matt Trotter / KWGS

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt on Friday invited leaders of the Five Tribes of Oklahoma to begin formal negotiations related to last year’s landmark U.S. Supreme Court ruling on tribal sovereignty.

Stitt said in a statement he will welcome the leaders of the Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Muscogee (Creek) and Seminole nations to begin discussions “to address and resolve the potential issues that have arisen” as a result of the ruling. Stitt didn’t say when those discussions might begin.

U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Oklahoma

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Tribe leaders of the Cherokee and Chickasaw Nations want Congress to allow them to make agreements with the state of Oklahoma in the wake of a U.S. Supreme Court decision regarding criminal jurisdictions.

OSU Center for Health Sciences

The OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine at the Cherokee Nation is officially open after a private ribbon cutting.

Medical school students and faculty started using the building earlier this month.

Cherokee Nation officials had been discussing a Tahlequah medical school for about a decade before announcing a partnership with OSU in October 2018. The $40 million, 84,000-square foot facility is on the campus of W.W. Hastings Hospital.

Tribes Try To Shield Elders And Their Knowledge From Virus

Dec 28, 2020
Cherokee Nation

As Monica Harvey watched, crowds flocked to a Sam’s Club in northern Arizona where she works, picking shelves clean of toilet paper and canned goods. Native American seniors couldn’t move fast enough, and Harvey saw their faces fall when they reached empty shelves.

The Navajo woman wanted to help tribal elders get household staples without leaving their homes and risking exposure to COVID-19, so she started Defend Our Community, a group that delivers supplies.

Courtesy Cherokee Nation

Cherokee Nation has started vaccinating health care workers at their tribal health complex in Tahlequah, Okla.

Cherokee Nation

Cherokee Nation unveiled in a video presentation on Monday some of the work being done on the Durbin Feeling Language Center, which will house all of the tribe’s language programs under one roof in Tahlequah.

The old Cherokee casino is undergoing a $5 million renovation as part of a broader, $16 million initiative to save the Cherokee language announced last year.

There will be more than classrooms and offices there.