In Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation elections on Tuesday, four new members swept onto the Board of Trustees, the tribes’ governing body.
Tribal chairman Gary Burke won re-election and will keep his seat, but he will be joined by a number of new faces.
Jeremy Wolf was elected to the vice chair position, Rosenda Shippentower won treasurer, the secretary position went to David Close and a new member at large will be Aaron Ashley.
In addition to Burke, trustees who remain on the board include: Justin Quaempts, Woodrow Star, Armand Minthorn and general council chair Alan Crawford.
Burke finished with 298 votes, ahead of challenger Kat Brigham, who finished with 188 and Elwood Patawa who received 155 votes. Stuart Harris, the fourth and final candidate for chair, received 77 votes.
Wolf nipped incumbent Leo Stewart for the vice chair position, 368 votes to 352.
The treasurer race was also a close one, with Shippentower edging incumbent Aaron Hines 371-350.
In the at-large races, where four positions were at stake, Justin Quaempts was the top vote getter with 455. He was followed by Ashley with 324, Star with 291 and Armand Minthorn with 265. He just nosed out Les Minthorn with 238, Ellen Taylor with 229 and David Wolf Jr. with 210. A total of 13 tribal members ran for the four open positions.
The only constitutional amendment on the ballot asked voters if they wanted to change the status of Section C tribal members to full tribal members. The amendment passed by a vote of 417 in favor and 258 opposed.
Section C members will continue to receive the same benefits as fully-enrolled tribal members, including gaming dividends, elder support checks, loan eligibility, scholarships, job preference and more. The change to full membership grants full treaty rights to hunt and fish, negating the need for any permits. Currently there are 93 Section C tribal members, according to the CTUIR.
There were 2,199 voters eligible to participate in the CTUIR election and 753 returned ballots, a 34 percent participation rate. Those elected Tuesday will take office Dec. 2 at 9 a.m. at Nixyaawii Governance Center.