TAHLEQUAH, OK – Four Tribal Council incumbents were re-elected, with one newcomer elected, while four other Tribal Council district races are heading to run offs next month, according to unofficial results from the recent Cherokee Nation General Election. The recent election drew 38 candidates vying for seats in Tribal Council Districts, 2, 4, 5, 7, 9, 10, 11, 15 and one at-large.
The four incumbents returning to their seats include Mike Dobbins of District 4, E.O. Smith of District 5, Mike Shambaugh of District 9, and Victoria Vasquez of District 11. Vazquez finished with 486 votes, or 63 percent of votes cast in District 11.
“I’m heartened by the support the people of Cherokee Nation have given me,” Councilor Vazquez said. “As I have talked with Cherokees throughout my term, and especially during this campaign, I appreciated every Cherokee telling me about their needs and how our Nation must be there in difficult times. I’m excited and eager to get back to work making Cherokee Nation stronger over the next four years.”
District 9 Councilor Mike Shambaugh was also re-elected to a second term with 575 votes or 59 percent of votes.
“I want to sincerely thank the citizens of the Cherokee Nation for giving me the opportunity to continue to represent them on the Tribal Council,” Councilor Shambaugh said. “I look forward to continuing the work that the tribe has already began through the American Rescue Plan Act funding and what we’re doing to expand our justice system in McGirt to better protect and serve everyone throughout the Cherokee Nation Reservation. I think there’s a lot of possibility for so much more. I’m just grateful to be entrusted with some of the responsibility of steering our tribal endeavors for our citizens.”
Incumbents Mike Dobbins of District 4 and E.O. Smith of District 5 were also re-elected with 87 percent and 82 percent of the votes, respectively. Newcomer, Danny Callison took the District 15 race with 60 percent of the votes.
Cherokee Nation Districts 2, 7, 10, and the at-large races are headed to runoffs on July 24. Candidates vying for the District 2 Seat facing a runoff is Candessa Teehee and Bobby Slover. David Comingdeer and Joshua Sam will be on the run-off ticket for District 7. District 10 candidates Shaunda Handle-Davis and Melvina Shotpouch will be in the run off, as will Kyle Haskins and Jack Kidwell for the at-large seat.
The Cherokee Nation Election Commission will certify the vote count on June 7. Tribal Councilors will be sworn in on August 14. For more information on the General Election and to see unofficial results including challenge ballots, visit https://election.cherokee.org/media/0ewp2etq/2021-unofficial-general-election-results-including-challenged-ballots.pdf