Monday, January 5, 2015

New Year means new opportunities to help our fellow Cherokees

The New Year marks a fresh slate for us all. As 2015 resolutions are formed, I hope one commitment you make and keep is a renewed sense of service to our Cherokee Nation. It is something I am passionate about and work toward every day.

More than 175 years ago the Cherokee people established a new life in northeast Oklahoma after the Trail of Tears. We did that by helping one another every day, and by knowing we are one people and we come from one fire. Today, just like we did then, we must go out of our way to help one another. It is what makes us one; it is the Cherokee way. Our strength as a sovereign tribal nation resides in the people and the strength of our families. That’s why it is so important that we continue to lift one another up to achieve success and happiness.

In 2015, I challenge you to make a difference for Cherokee people. Anyone can make a positive change and improve the world in even the smallest ways. Simple acts sometimes bring the biggest impact, and I have seen firsthand how it can create a domino effect. Good will begets good will. Donations, volunteer work or simply being of service to someone in need can go a long way. These are the things that improve lives. The simplest things in life can mean the world to our Cherokee brothers and sisters. The sense of giving of ourselves is part of who we are as Cherokee people. I am proud of that and proud knowing it lives within all of us to ensure the tribe’s greater good is always felt.

That indomitable spirit of Cherokee community and family well-being is what kept our ancestors alive more than 175 years ago, and it is what will fuel us to great heights in the coming year.

I encourage you to look around, appreciate what you have and know how blessed we are today in the Cherokee Nation. For those folks who are struggling this time of year, I hope you can find some silver lining to be grateful for.

The Cherokee Nation is successful and thriving. Our businesses are making record profits and we have invested in homes and health care and renewed hope for Cherokee people.

As I was taught by my Cherokee elders, it’s important to give back to our people. We do this because we are thankful for all that we receive, it’s the Cherokee way.   

Wado, and Happy New Year to all.