Tribal offices will be closed on Friday, July 26th for an All Staff meeting.

Candidate Statements

Good Day Tribal Member;

My name is Frank Aspria Sr. I’m the son of Ilene Somes (DePoe). Grandson of the late William DePoe Sr. who is the grandson of Charlie and Minnie DePoe. I want to thank everyone who voted and supported my campaign to get elected almost three years ago now. I have mature. d so much these past three years on council. That is why;

I’m asking for your vote again. I will continue to speak up for tribal members that may not have a voice in the Tribal Government process. With fair and equal decisions for all tribal members, I will support amendments to our tribal laws/ordnance’s that violate the C.T.S.I. Constitution and Indian civil rights act.

I would like to see a tribal elder care facility with apartments and assisted living. This would promote independent living for tribal elders, who may not have family or resources available to them being an elder.

We need more affordable housing for our membership, in all service areas.

I would like to see more done to protect our rivers and forests within our 1855 coastal treaty area. Because without them, the tribe will have nothing. We know climate change could spell disaster to our way of life, in more ways than one.

I would like to see fish and eel hatcheries built on every river within our 1855 treaty area/reservation boundaries. This is important to get fish populations up.

I would like to see tribal law enforcement and detention center built to exercise our law enforcement treaty rights within our 1855 treaty area/reservation.

I would like to see the Tribal Council add another per-capita payment or divide the payment into 2 payments every year. With additional payment for the holiday season, because most of us, could use an extra helping hand during the holidays.

With the purchase of the High property, we should build our own tribal water and sewage processing plants, to assist our membership and tribal administration in being self-sufficient without interference from the city of Siletz.

These are but a few of my ideas and I respectfully ask for your vote.

Thank you and have a good day,

Frank Aspria Sr.

Frank Aspria

My name is Gerald Ben. My grandparents were Archie Ben and Victoria Butler Ben. My parents are Ed and Delores Ben. I was not going to run again but current events have prompted me to turn in my application.

At the last General Council meeting I made the statement that nothing is changing in the way tribal administration is being run. The same complaints are made at council sessions, General Council meetings, and in online posts. I said something has to be done to light a fire under council to make positive changes at the clinic, the tribal administration office, and at the casino. We can no longer accept covid or lack of employment applications as excuses for poor performance.

The next couple of years are going to be crucial for our tribe. We cannot count on a new casino in Salem and Chinook Winds is declining. The new hotel we were shown at a special meeting has not been started. The new General Manager had promised new and great things. So far, the casino has reduced the number of shows and has not introduced any new or outstanding events to bring in players. We just get more of the same. Same pool tournaments, same car show, same MMA fights, same old stale events.

The clinic director made the same statement when she came on board. Months later people still complain about calls not returned, treatments being changed in the middle of the case, and appointments being changed or cancelled without notice.

When a couple of us tried to help the elders program make changes to their budget all we got from the administration was a run around. The administration people said the budget was already approved, you need to go to next years carry over fund process, you need to do the budget for 2025. So, nothing was done. However, when an acting program director came on board she was able to get a change done in less than month of being on the job even though the funds came from the same funding source. This is just another example of the administration not being helpful to the tribal members. This type of action, or inaction, is why tribal members feel the need to speak out at meetings or go on social media to complain.

As a member of the tribal council I cannot make changes alone. It will take the council working together to make changes. I might not be able to get things changed right away but change has to come in order for the tribe to function and serve our members.

As for my background, I spent over 20 years working for the Bureau of Indian Affairs. During that time I served as an appraiser, as the Regional Chief Appraiser, the Regional Realty Officer, and as Deputy Regional Director. As the Deputy I worked with all the programs managed by the Bureau including Realty, Social Services, Forestry, Human Resources, Land Management, Budget, and Tribal Services.

I participated in the budget process on the national level, sitting on the discussion between the Office of Budget and tribal leaders from around the country. I also worked with budget negotiations at the regional level. As a past tribal council member, I have delt with our budget.

I have participated in negations between regional tribes and state agencies, like Oregon Department of Transportation, negotiations between tribes and local governments, and between landowners and potential renters.

Because of my realty background, I served on the review committee for the Bureau direct loan program when it made loans to tribes and tribal members wanting to start businesses.

While at the Bureau I did a detail to the Office of the Special Trustee, working on projects related to the Cobell breach of trust case.

As far as the casino operations I have taken casino management training, took the training to deal blackjack at our casino when it opened (I delt cards for three years starting in the tent), have worked in restaurant services as a bar manager and then as assistant night manager at the Sea Galley in Salem, and served on the board for three years as part of tribal council.

I believe my experience shows I have to ability to help lead our tribe for the next few years. I have the actual working knowledge to try to make things work and better serve our members.

Gerald Ben

My name is Sharon Edenfield and my Father is Bennie Brown Jr. and Mother is the late Edwina Ann (Simmons) Brown who was also known as Tink or Tinker. My Grandfather was Bennie Brown Sr. and Grandmother was Mary Ann (Butler) Brown, my other Grandfather was Edwin Simmons and Grandmother Clarinda Ann (Smith) Simmons and Great Grandfather was Hoxie Simmons.

I have 43 years of experience working with the Tribe and began serving on the Tribal Council in2009.r of Tribal Council. With the experience I have gained plus my extensive knowledge working with tribal administration, I feel I have a lot to offer to help serve the membership.

My goal revolves around programs that fall under the General Welfare Exclusion Act. I want to see the Federal Partners exclude GWE services the Tribe provides to not be counted as income so it won’t negatively impact benefits such as SSI, SNAP, Housing Veteran’s, etc.

I also pride myself in being fair, honest and believe in equitable treatment of our tribal members. I have a lot to offer our membership by serving on Tribal Council and am humbly requesting your support.

Respectfully,

Sharon A. Edenfield

Sharon Edenfield

Dear Tribal Members: Happy New Year to one and all. I have taken a year off from Tribal Council, after having served 18 years. I also retired from my 30 years of working in our CTSI Cultural Programs after our August Pow Wow this year. I am proud of my accomplishments, and all of those years of service. I feel refreshed and ready to serve again. It is not easy to serve on Tribal Council, and it was especially difficult to attend to all of the pressing matters of governance, while also working full time. I feel that I served honorably, and productively in my 18 years previously, and now will have the extra energy and attention to give to our Tribal government.

It is no secret that I was a party to a court filing against 5 of my fellow Tribal Council, members in the later part of 2022. The court did not render its opinion on that matter of illegal actions on the part of those 5 elected members of our Council until several weeks after our Feb. 2023 Elections, but the court decided entirely in favor of our filing and found that those actions named in the complaint were indeed illegal, and struck those actions down.

After the court opinion came out, at the May General Council mtg this year, I asked each of the Tribal Council members to comment on that opinion. 4 of the 5 named in the suit were present and each indicated that they thought the court was wrong, that they believe that they did nothing wrong, …and Would Do It Again. Following that General Council mtg, there was an investigation based on Ethics Violation complaints which also found the same 5 guilty of Ethics Violations. As currently written, our law did not anticipate a situation where a majority of our elected officials would be involved in the same illegal action. There is no legal remedy or way of sanctioning these 5 for their actions, as it takes a super-majority of the entire Siletz Tribal Council to take action sanctioning any member of the seated Council.

I think it’s important for all voters in this election to know that the 3 incumbents in this years election are among those 5 who have violated their Oath of Office and have openly stated that they do not believe our own court’s opinion about their violations of our laws, that they did nothing wrong, and that they would do it again. I will take them at their word, and believe that they would/will. That is a wholly inappropriate attitude for an elected official of our government, and is not someone I can vote for.

Instead of admitting their wrongs, apologizing for their actions and their many negative effects, these 5 continue to try to defend their illegal actions. Their actions have wasted vast amounts of Tribal money, energy and productivity in defending their illegal actions. They have also had the nerve to charge Tribal Council Timesheet hours for their time spent trying (and of course failing) to defend their illegal actions. It is a toxic and serious crisis situation that these 5 have caused. We need to elect 3 people in this election who we can trust to follow our laws – who will commit to amending our laws so that there are simple legal remedies to reign-in elected officials who we have placed in positions of trust, and who have violated that trust, in future.

I understand very deeply our history and the many historical wrongs that have been done to our people (our ignored Treaty Rights, the literal theft of our Siletz Reservation lands, etc.), and will work to have those historical legal claims addressed. My previous decades of work have put many of the building blocks towards those efforts in place (working to support the research for Charles Wilkinson’s book, legal analysis of our claims issues, etc.). I understand federal Indian laws and U.S. and State of Oregon Indian policy. I know many of the elected officials, and agency/department leaders.

If elected, I would do my very best to serve our Tribe in the way that I believe we should all be able to expect of our elected leadership. There is much hard work needing to be done, and many positive goals for us to achieve. I hope that I can be a part of that ongoing work, and would appreciate your support in this coming February’s election.

Sincerely,

Robert Kentta

Robert Kentta

My name is Judy (Howell, John) Muschamp and I’m asking for your support in the upcoming Tribal Council election. I am the daughter of Deanna (Downey) Howell, granddaughter of Mae (Adams) Downey, and great-granddaughter of John and Martha Adams. My husband George (Woody) and I raised our daughter Holly (John) Roos, within the tribal community. My work career has been in service to my tribe. I retired as Tribal Health Director after working for the tribe 38 years. I started low on the totem pole, hired for bookkeeping/regulation researcher for the tribe’s first work assistance program, quickly advancing as the tribe grew. I was there when the tribe sold it’s first timber sale, helped plan our first housing development, negotiated our first Indian Child Welfare Act agreement, helped secure funding for our health, education, social and welfare programs, relocated my daughter and I to Portland to open and staff our new Portland Area Office after assisting in expansion of the tribal service area from 8 to 11 counties, and raised funding for our first and second tribal health clinics. Anyone remember when Nike developed a native American friendly shoe give-away? That was my project and I loved helping everyone select their shoes…hmmm why can’t we do something fun like that again?

I love writing so I wrote or co-authored many grant applications, contract documents, lobbying and congressional testimonies. I was involved in the establishment of the tribes first Head Start, Diabetes, Tobacco Cessation, Healthy Traditions and Nesika Illahee Fittness Center programs to name a few. Drafting and negotiating Siletz’ first Indian Health Service self-governance Compact and Annual Funding Agreement was my greatest honor. We finally had stable program funding. A consultant once asked me to visualize my reasons for focusing my efforts on access to local health care…memories of my mom driving my Grandma Downey with three little kids all dressed to the nines, 2 hours to Chemawa and 2 hours back. That was our only health care option, imagine 4 hours travel when you’re sick! That became my calling. I worked and learned from many amazing people along the way, too many to name but always focused on tribal member needs.

During retirement I regained my health and became a granny to Roy, the love of my life. It’s time now for me to get back to what I love, tribal service. I believe my experience in tribal government, self-determination, program development and administration will help our tribe move forward. Since retiring many of life’s ups and downs kept me away from tribal affairs, but I have always been a quick learner. More importantly, as a user of tribal services since retiring I’ve gained a new perspective and appreciation for where we’ve come from as a tribe and imagine future possibilities.

My main areas of interest are advancing our tribal gaming interests, expanding access to elder care and ensuring advancement in Indian Health Service and Bureau of Indian Affairs tribal self-governance. With your support I will represent you all to the best of my ability.

Judy Muschamp

Thank you for reading through the voter’s pamphlet! Being informed of issues within the Tribe & voting in Tribal Elections is key to the success of the Tribe. One positive thing that came from COVID was the regular monthly Tribal Council meetings, the quarterly General Council meetings, the Candidate’s Fair and the Elections are now livestreamed on the Tribal website in the member area. This allows the Membership to be updated in a timely manner.

Who am I? A daughter, a granddaughter, a great-granddaughter, a sister, a mother, an ex-wife, a friend, a community member, and a Tribal leader. I am Angela Dawn Walker Ramirez. The daughter of Shirley Ben Walker, the Chairman for the Siletz Tribal Elders Council and the most recently retired Tribal Whipwoman – an independent, strong, traditional native woman. The granddaughter of Archie Ben, the last honorary Chief of the Siletz Tribe – a true leader before he was bestowed an honorary title. The granddaughter of Victoria Butler Ben – a woman that provided a meal and place to rest to anyone that needed it – a woman that could not see the hardships of others and ignore it. The great-granddaughter of Chetco & Ella Ben and Bruce & Jane (Hollis) who are my ancestors that persevered in the first years on the Reservation for my family to be here today. I have inherited these same qualities and do my best to be my ancestor’s dreams realized.

“If you raise your children to feel that they can accomplish any goal or task they decide upon, you will have succeeded as a parent, and you will have given your children the greatest of all blessings.”

– Brian Tracy

I raised my two children as a single mother by choice starting while I was still pregnant with by youngest, and it was so very hard at times – financially, emotionally, and physically. I did my best to support their dreams and ideas while they were growing up. We all want our children to do better than we have, and it amazes me how far they have exceeded my dreams for them. They have grown into independent, successful, compassionate, and caring adults. My son is a Marine Veteran and now a police officer. After graduating from an East Coast private college, my daughter came home to work for the Tribe and in 2020 opened an outpatient addiction counseling clinic with three Tribal Member partners in Newport.

For 25 years, I have worked for the Siletz Tribe and the Bureau of Indian Affairs. In February 2022, I began working at the Siletz Tribal Gaming Commission as the Executive Assistant. My other positions with the Tribe were in Social Services and Enrollment. By working in those capacities, I understand the adversities & issues our membership faces. While in Enrollment, I was able to talk to many Tribal members on the phone and through email. I still receive email for Enrollment questions and am glad to be of assistance to get Tribal members to the people they need to talk to. If you don’t know who to contact in the Tribe, please email me at angelar@ctsi.nsn.us and I will do my best to direct you to the staff that can assist you.

I cast my vote as one of nine Tribal Council members to do the right thing for the Tribe, which is not always easy. I strive to keep the membership informed. I have demonstrated by the way I live my life that I am a person that cares for others first and makes decisions to benefit the Tribe as a whole. All Tribal Members should be treated equally – what is done for one needs to be done for all. Supporting Tribal members and being able to help move the Tribe forward is my mission.

I am grateful to be completing my 2nd three-year term. I am asking for your support to continue as a Tribal Leader. I feel I have been an asset to the Government of our Tribe and there are many things still to be accomplished. I am only able to continue to be of service to my Tribe if the voters say so – every single vote counts! In the 2022 election there were over 4,200 Tribal members eligible to vote – however just 795 voted! Please encourage your Siletz Tribal members family and friends to be involved and vote this election year. Please go to my website www.Angela4Siletz.com for more information about me, my thoughts and other Election related information.

Angela Ramirez

Greetings fellow Tribal Members. I am submitting my name as a candidate for the 2024 Tribal Council Elections.

I have served the Tribe for many years in numerous capacities. I have worked in economic development, Chinook Winds Casino Resort, and Tribal Administration off and on since 1983. I continue to serve on a temporary basis, when needed.

I enjoy serving the Tribe and membership, and would like to put my vast experience to work in seeking improvements for our membership. Of particular interest to me is development of a strategy for economic growth, housing opportunities for the houseless, eliminating federal requirements for a service area – which limits our ability to serve tribal members. I would like to see the Tribe revise their strategic and comprehensive plans, and, make budgeting processes more focused based on these plans. This is not a comprehensive list by any means.

If you have any questions of me, please reach out to me at: retasket@hotmail.com. I look forward to participating in the Candidate’s Fair, and ask for your vote in the upcoming elections.

Tina Retasket

Hello tribal family, my name is Creed Tyee Taylor. Im running for tribal council for many reasons, for myself, im running so I can be a voice for our people and also be person that listens to our people.

I’m a culture bearer, a father, and a leader with accountability, and my passion is our culture and our ways, and have the ability to create pathways to help within our tribe and communities. I’m currently the Chief Engineer at our casino and have a vast understanding of what our people do within Indian country and our communities. Our tribe has come along way and with your support I would love the opportunity to help our people by truly listening and understanding what is wanted in our community. Our voices can and will be heard when it starts with our votes, our votes can make positive change throughout our communities. I do believe I can be that humble tribal leader that can promote growth, encouragement and new opportunities for our youth to our Elders. I would love to hear from you all in any way, I’m always open to any questions and concerns, and would appreciate your vote in this upcoming election.

Thank you,

Creed Tyee Taylor

Creed Taylor