Ben seeking second term as Tribal Chief
Choctaw Indian Chief Cyrus Ben says he plans to continue building upon the Tribe’s achievements in his first term as he announced his intention this week to run for a second term.
Tribal elections will be held on June 6.
Chief Ben, who was sworn in as the fifth chief of the Tribe back in July 2019, defeated former two-term Chief Phyliss J. Anderson by a near two-to-one margin.
Today marks the beginning of the qualifying period for the upcoming Tribal elections this summer.
“Over the last three and a half years, the challenges we faced as a Tribe, nation and world were unlike any faced in modern history,” Chief Ben said. “The COVID-19 pandemic brought our lives and work to a sudden halt and the Tribe suffered great loss like so many others around the world. As we waited for a vaccine, we made great efforts to stop the spread of the virus while still fighting for our future. Just like our ancestors before us, we overcame through the strength, prayers and perseverance of our people.”
Despite the challenges with COVID-19, Chief Ben said the Tribe has accomplished much during his tenure, including major broadband efforts that’s bringing wifi to all Tribal schools, new home construction in various communities, and plans for a new middle school and high school just to name a few.
Chief Ben also served on the state flag committee and helped in selection of the new flag adopted by Mississippians.
“It is my goal to serve the best interest of all Chahta people,” he said. “Whether it’s knocking on doors in Washington to secure federal funding for school, public works, health or roadways (just to name a few) to working to ensure our Tribe has a voice at the local/state table of the conversations that affect us, I will continue to stand up for my people and our advancement,” he said.
The position of Tribal Chief was created by constitutional amendment in 1975 prior to which time the Tribe's principal leader was titled Tribal Chairman.