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K-State Today

March 24, 2015

Principal chief of the fourth largest tribal nation, George Tiger kicks off K-State Alumni PowWow

Submitted by LaVerne Bitsie-Baldwin

Join us for the kick off of the K-State Alumni PowWow at 4 p.m. Tuesday, March 24, in the Little Theater of the K-State Student Union.

There will be a reception at 3:30 p.m. with remarks form Principal Chief George Tiger at 4 p.m. 

Provost Mason, Associate Provost Myra Gordon and Mildred Edwards of the governor's office will give welcoming remarks. Chief Tiger will present his address "The Mvskoke Way: Peoplehood, Vision, Progress."

George Tiger is the principal chief of the Muscogee "Creek" Nation, located in Central Eastern Oklahoma. The Muscogee Nation (MCN) is the fourth largest federally recognized tribe in the U.S. The Nation encompasses 11 counties in Oklahoma, has more than 78,000 enrolled tribal citizens, and annually contributes more than half a billion dollars to local, state and national economies.

Born on March 22, 1950 at the family home in the rural Yardeka community near Henryetta, Oklahoma, Tiger's first language was his Muscogee "Creek" language, and he remains a fluent speaker. Chief Tiger's traditional matrilineal descent renders him a member of the Hickory Ground Tribal Town and of the Wind Clan. He also is a lifelong member of the Yardeka Indian Baptist Church. Tribal leadership runs in the Tiger family. Chief Tiger's father was a resolution writer for the MCN National Council in the mid-50s to the early '60s, and his grandfather, Motey Tiger, was the principal chief of the Muscogee "Creek" Nation from 1907-1917.

Tiger is currently serving the fourth year of his first term as principal chief. He also is a current member of the National Board of Regents of Haskell Indian Nations University. Chief Tiger's career in Indian government began in the 1970s working with other tribes as well as MCN, serving on the Muscogee "Creek" National Council legislative branch for 14 years and served as Speaker of the Council in 2006-2007.

As a champion of Indian causes, Chief Tiger has sat on countless advocacy boards and committees across the United States and Indian Country. He is recognized on local, state, and national levels for his efforts in the Muscogee "Creek" Nation for economic development, tribal leadership and innovation. He was presented with the "Tribal Leader of the Year" award April 15, 2014 at the 32nd Annual Native American Financial Officers Association, or NAFOA, Conference in New Orleans, where he was cited to be "a transformative leader who as implemented considerable advancements for his people." On March 11, Tiger received the "American Indian Leadership" award for 2015 from the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development.

Principal Chief George Tiger lives in Bristow, Oklahoma, with his wife, Frances. They have four sons, Chebon, Greg, Chris and Kenneth, and four daughters, Angela, Molly, Gina and Kendra and seven grandchildren.

PowWow events

"The Dead Can't Dance"  film screening and filmmaker Q-and-A with Rodrick Pocowatchit, K-State '89, Friday, April 3. The screening will be at 1:30 p.m. in the K-State Little Theater. 

"PowWow 101"  by Errol "Scotty" Brown Eyes, Oglala Lakota, will be at 1:30 p.m. April 10 in the K-State Union courtyard.

K-State Alumni PowWow, hosted by the American Indian Science & Engineering Society, or AISES, from 10:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, April 11, in Ahern Fieldhouse. 

Christopher Cornelius, University of Nebraska at Lincoln assistant dean of engineering, will be the Multicultural Engineering Program Spring Banquet speaker, from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday, April 23, in the K-State Student Union Ballroom K.  RSVP required.

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