Vice Chairman candidate targets Hopi, Tewa issues
My name is Ernest "Tubby" Honyaktewa, a member of the Eagle Clan from the village of Mishongnovi. After careful consideration and months of preparation I would like to inform the Hopi and Tewa people that I have decided to announce my candidacy for Vice Chairman of the Hopi Tribe.
I have lived on the Hopi Reservation since birth. My educational background began at Second Mesa Day School and then proceeded to junior high school at Hopi Day School in Kykotsmovi. I attended Winslow High School for one year and then transferred to Woodstock High School in Woodstock, Vt. I have worked on studies at Washington State University, Northern Arizona University and Northland Pioneer College.
I have also successfully served on the Hopi Tribal Council as a representative for the village of Mishongnovi from 1996-99. During my term as a Council Representative, I volunteered and was appointed to serve on several committees, such as the Budget and Finance Committee, Hopi Land Team, and the Grants and Scholarship committee.
Prior to my decision to run for office, I have spent many days and hours compiling issues and concerns that I feel should be addressed during my campaign. There is so much information that I would like to share with you my people, but I have elected to select the most important issues that affects our people daily.
The most important issue that I believe should be addressed is the interaction between the Hopi people and their tribal government. For too long the village leaders and people have been left in the dark in regards to major issues concerning the tribe as a whole. I believe that a full disclosure of facts should be presented to the people when major tribal issues are being addressed so that their opinions can be considered. This give and take between the tribal government and the people will ensure that the government fulfills its primary purpose of serving the interests of the people.
The second issue of concern I would like to address, as Vice Chairman is educational and career opportunities. I would like to see the revision of the tribe's grants and scholarship criteria with application deadline extensions, and income verification of parents and students eliminated to ensure that students are guaranteed all the funds needed to complete their education. I want to work closely with our local schools and be directly involved with curriculum development and implementation of Hopi Language education in the villages.
I would also like to see some economic development taking place at the individual village level, as well as at the tribal level. The Hopi people also need a program to assist them in finding employment and housing on and off the reservation. I believe that much of the tribal assets could be used as collateral to fund these economic improvements.
Finally, I believe that the tribal health care system is in need of improvement. I want to develop and implement plans on how to better assist, educate and give immediate attention to all medical patients. I would also like to establish strong working relationships with the Hopi Medical Center staff, to ensure that patients are provided with the best possible health care and future expansion of medical services that could be obtained.
I believe that it is time that, we, the younger generation, assume leadership roles and responsibilities, so that we may lead our people toward a better future as our leaders and elders of yesterday instructed us. If I'm elected as your Vice Chairman, with your assistance, we can accomplish what is needed for the Hopi and Tewa people to prosper and thrive for generations to come.
Ernest "Tubby" Honyaktewa