Newly elected members of the MCN National Council took their oaths and assumed their official duties
By Angel Ellis/Reporter
OKMULGEE, Oklahoma–Muscogee (Creek) Nation (MCN) Principal Chief David Hill and Second Chief Del Beaver were sworn into office on in a public inaugural ceremony at Paradise Cove theater located in the River Spirit Casino Resort on Jan. 4. The Cove was filled with citizens, dignitaries and supporters of the newly elected officials.
Supreme Court Vice Chief Justice Mekko George Thompson swore in Second Chief Beaver.
His public address was focused on the continuity of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation and being willing to embrace opportunities.
“The opportunities to talk with one another, to interact with one another, to have fellowship with one another, the opportunities to meet our people….that is a blessing to me,” Beaver said. “When you look at what our people have been through, it would be easy to make excuses…but we don’t make excuses around here.”
“That is not who we are as Muscogee People.”
Beaver said that each generation has a duty to the continuity of our tribe.
“Let us never forget the trials and tribulations that our forefathers endured,” Beaver said. “Most importantly, let us never forget the responsibility we have today for the future of the nation.”
The swearing-in of Principal Chief David Hill followed Second Chief Beaver. Chief Hill was sworn in by Supreme Court Vice Chief Justice Mekko George Thompson.
Chief Hills address emphasized his stance on tribal unity on gaming and tribal sovereignty.
“While it is disheartening that the State of Oklahoma seeks to repeat history and break promises to our people, we will continue to honor our commitment,” Hill said.
He spoke about the many critical modern contributions the tribes make for the state of Oklahoma and on the priority he places on building trust.
Much of Chief Hills address paid homage to officials who have previously served the Muscogee (Creek) Nation in the Office of Chief and on the National Council.
“This has been accomplished by the members of the National Council, both current and previous,” Hill said. “And by the Principal Chief who precede me including Chief Cox, Chief Beaver, Chief Fife, Chief Ellis, Chief Tiger and Chief Floyd.”
Hill thanked those officials for the foundation he stood on and pledged to carry on the legacy.
“Building trust is my first goal towards strengthening our nation,” Hill said. “I will tirelessly work to improve our services by listening to the citizens and the employees.”
The inaugural ceremony broadly encompassed Muscogee (Creek) cultural, both traditional and modern. From traditional oratory by Edwin Marshall to Muscogee Hymns by Native Praise and MCN Language, to a reading by U.S. Poet Laureate Joy Harjo, to a stomp dance, the Inauguration was a distinctly Mvskoke event.
MCN’s rich history of military service was demonstrated as the MCN Honor Guard presenting the colors.
Pearl Thomas performed the National Anthem in the Muscogee (Creek) language.
Native Stone Baptist Church Pastor Gary Hawkins delivered the invocation, followed by Muscogee Hymn performed by the MCN Language Department.
Master of Ceremonies Jason Salsman introduced dignitaries and special guests and Reverend Grover Wind gave the benediction.
The evening celebration wrapped up with a stomp dance held at the River Spirit event center.
Principal Chief David Hill and Second Chief Beaver took time out of their busy schedule for a sit down interview with Mvskoke media. The interview will air on Mvskoke Radio and Mvskoke Vision soon.