Hopi chair, vice chair candidates confirmed

Leroy Sumatzkuku (left) and Herman G. Honanie are the final two candidates for the Hopi Vice Chairman's position after last Wednesday's primary election. They will face off in the general election on Nov. 18.

Leroy Sumatzkuku (left) and Herman G. Honanie are the final two candidates for the Hopi Vice Chairman's position after last Wednesday's primary election. They will face off in the general election on Nov. 18.

KYKOTSMOVI, Ariz. - Leroy Ned Shingoitewa and Clark W. Tenakhongva were the two top vote-getters last Wednesday in the race to be Hopi Tribal Chairman. They will face off next Wednesday, Nov. 18 in the general election, according to official results released by the Hopi Election Board Nov. 5.

Herman G. Honanie and Leroy Sumatzkuku led the field for the vice chairman's position, and will battle it out for that position in the general election.

Shingoitewa garnered 581 votes and Tenakhongva got 274 for the chairman's position, while Honanie tallied 663 votes and Sumatzkuku took 309 for the vice chairman's position. Each position is for a four-year term.

In all, 1,381 ballots were cast, according to Karen L. Balenquah-Shupla of the Hopi Election Office. She said turnout was low, but better than she expected given the political turmoil of the past couple of years.

Other candidates for chairman were Tommy Canyon, 213 votes; Phillip Roy Quochytewa Sr., 150 votes; Harry Nutumya, 105 votes; and Caleb H. Johnson, 42 votes.

Quochytewa, presiding officer of the Hopi Tribal Council, will retain his council seat, and will be up for reelection next year.

The other vice chairman candidates were Keith Pahovama Sr., 140 votes; Elgean Joshevama, 128 votes; and Rod Duwala, 114 votes.

The chairman and vice chairman positions have been vacant since last December when following a turbulent and often disruptive struggle for power, Ben Nuvamsa resigned as chairman and Todd Honyaoma Sr. resigned as vice chairman.

Presently, the chairman is also the chief executive officer of the tribe. However, a reorganization task team headed by Council member Davis F. Pecusa, is working on a resolution to remove the CEO powers from the chairman and make the CEO a separate job.

Hopi voters are urged to contact the Hopi Elections Office to confirm their eligibility to vote and to find their nearest polling station. For those who weren't able to vote in the primary election, requests for an absentee ballot can still be made through e-mail at hopielections@hopitelecom.net or by calling the Hopi Elections Office at (928) 734-2507 before tomorrow.

Also, a series of forums for the Chairman and Vice Chairman candidates will be held prior to the general election on the following dates and locations from 6:30-9 p.m.:

• Tomorrow at the Museum of Northern Arizona, Flagstaff;

• Friday at Native Connections; 4720 North Central Ave, Sixth Floor, Phoenix;

• Monday at Hopi Jr/Sr. High School, Keams Canyon;

• Tuesday at the Hotevilla Youth and Elderly Center, Hotevilla.

Hopi Radio KUYI 88.1 FM will be broadcasting the forums. For more information, contact Bonnie Secakuku at (928) 255-2572.

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