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Poarch Band of Creek Indians welcomes U.S. Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland

On Monday, the Poarch Band of Creek Indians welcomed U.S. Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland, the first Native American to ever hold the position, to their Atmore reservation.

Stephanie A. Bryan, Poarch Band of Creek Indians Chair and CEO, praised Haaland’s efforts in connecting Native American tribes with the federal government and called it a privilege to work with her.

“Secretary Haaland has been a tireless advocate for Tribes throughout her years of
service to our country, both as the Secretary of the Interior and as a Member of Congress”, said Bryan. “She truly understands how critically important it is for us, as an independent, sovereign Indian nation, to maintain a strong government-to-government relationship with the United States.”

“She is a true public servant and our country is blessed to have her in this important role.”

RELATED: 51 years of tradition: Poarch Band of Creek Indians to host annual Thanksgiving Pow Wow

During her trip to the reservation, Haaland stayed busy. She met with the Tribal Council to hear firsthand about their unique journey and challenges. She was also briefed on the Tribe’s recent multi-million dollar investment into high-speed internet service for the reservation and its surrounding communities.

Haaland also took in the tribe’s culture during a stop at the Poarch Creek Museum where she received an in depth guided tour of the Tribe’s history.

Haaland is responsible for the creation of the Secretary’s Tribal Advisory Committee (STAC) in 2021. STAC is a part of the White House Tribal Nations Summit and its goal, according to PBCI, is to “further strengthen relations between the Department of Interior and Indian Country, and to ensure that Tribal Leader Members have direct, consistent communication with the Department’s executive leadership and staff.”

The Poarch Band of Creek Indians is the only federally recognized tribe in Alabama.

Austen Shipley is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News.

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