Editor’s Note: With Family Festival less than a week away, voting in the District elections will conclude on June 29 at the CPN Tribal Court. In the interest of giving the candidates in this year’s two contested elections one last appeal to the voters, below are messages from the District 2 incumbent, Eva Marie Carney, and her challenger Anthony Cole.

Eva Marie Carney

I am grateful to our Director of Public Information, Jennifer Hardesty, and the Assistant Director, John VanPool, for their efforts to publicize this year’s Legislative elections and provide information about the candidates. Their work is an important part of our governmental process.

I hope that I have earned your trust during the past five years I have been privileged to serve as your representative. I respectfully request that you vote to return me to office for another term. If re-elected, I will continue to work hard to evaluate and appropriately address matters that come before the Legislature as well as work to build consensus on my own legislative initiatives. I also will continue to actively communicate with constituents and be responsive to their requests for information and assistance. My goal is to continue to grow our District 2 community and share – through my website, emails, and meetings around the District – what I learn about:

  • our history, traditions and ceremony,
  • scholarship, health care, and other opportunities available to our people, and
  • CPN business operations and executive branch initiatives.

Most everyone in District 2 who plans to vote by absentee ballot has already mailed in your ballot. If you have already voted, thank you for participating in our government. If your ballot is still buried in your mail pile, you still can vote and have your vote count – but please don’t delay. Your completed absentee ballot must arrive at the Tecumseh post office box by Friday, June 28. All returned absentee ballots will be gathered by the Election Committee on Saturday, June 29. Please note that you have one other alternative – you can bring your absentee ballot to the polls on Saturday June 29 during Family Reunion Festival, return it to the Election Committee, and vote in person instead of using the absentee ballot. 

To those of you in District 2 who plan to vote in person at the Tribal Court on Saturday, June 29, I will be there to vote and I hope to see you at the polls.

It has been a unique privilege to serve District 2 and the Potawatomi people. Migwetch/thank you for reading this and for your participation in our government. 

Eva Marie Carney, District 2 Legislator, ecarney@potawatomi.org or 1-866-961-6988.

Anthony Cole

As everyone knows, the election season is drawing to a close. I am running for legislator of District 2. Rather than writing a political piece, I wanted to share what being Potawatomi means to me. It’s very simple actually: Family and Community.

Living out of state, I do not get to see my family as often as I’d like.  For my family, the Potawatomi Family Reunion does exactly what it was designed to do, it brings us together. Brothers and sisters, nieces and nephews, the whole gamut is represented. It’s a time for us to catch up on family business and share family stories from years past.

The family reunion is also a great place to meet relatives you may not know you have. My family, the Yott’s, were one of the honored families in 2000. That year my mother met a sister she had never met before. The two talked the whole day and they have stayed in contact ever since, exchanging stories from different eras of my grandfather’s life.

For me, being Potawatomi isn’t about free health care or any of the other available benefits; it’s about family and relationships. Our tribe has gone to great lengths to help each and every member learn about their family history. When I see the enormous effort put forth by the tribe to maintain and preserve our history, it’s not hard to see that this tribe is something I want to be involved in. I don’t view our tribe as a resource to exploited, I see it as an opportunity to be involved in something that matters. Family matters.