My name is Clair Wood and I am excited to announce my candidacy for the 4th Osage Nation Congress. I recently graduated from Oklahoma State University with my Masters in Business Administration and received my undergraduate degree from OSU in Secondary Education. I received my Associate of Arts in English from Northern Oklahoma College. I briefly worked for the Osage Nation Congress as the Legislative Assistant, directly under the Legislative Counsel, assisting in revising, editing and researching proposed legislation for all Congress members.
For the past two and a half years I have worked for the Gaming Commission. I am currently an Investigative Agent. I conduct background investigations on vendors and employees working within the Osage Casinos. My objective is to ensure the revenues made by the casinos are protected, which I would continue to do if elected to Congress. Originally I was hired to write policy and procedures for the Gaming Commission. While working in the Regulatory Compliance department my other duties consisted of ensuring the Casinos were in compliance with all federal and state laws.
Currently, the Office of Fiscal Performance and Review only conduct audits every other year. This isn’t enough. Audits need to be conducted yearly to ensure our money is being used appropriately. I would like to appropriate funds to expand the Office of Fiscal Performance and Review so they can hire more auditors to ensure our money is accounted for and being used appropriately.
I was an English teacher for four years and believe education to be very important. The Scholarship Fund is very helpful to students; however, I believe more money should be allocated to the fund. We have $30 million set aside for Direct Services. We can easily appropriate more funds to the Scholarship program to assist students further, which would also encourage more Osages to seek higher education.
We are fortunate to have the Health Benefits card. However, I would like to see a $500 increase for all tribal members. This increase would be great for Osage employees considering our deductible has gone up to $1,000 a year.
Our Elders are important. We need to strive to take better care of them. We need to build homes for our seniors in Hominy and Fairfax. We also need assisted living in all areas so we can make sure our elders have the aide and assistance they need.
The Osage Nation needs to thrive and continue to grow through diversifying economic development. I want to be a representative for all constituents near and far. I promise to make myself available. I want to be a voice for the Osage People.
My family is from the Grayhorse district. They were from Joe’s Band and members of the Deer Clan. Snakehide was the father of Pun-q-tah, and Pun-q-tah was the mother of my great-great grandmother Elizabeth Berry, an original allottee. My great-grandmother was Elizabeth Smith, her son, my grandfather is Virgil Petty. My parents are Paul and Lisa Didlake.
[The Osage News does not edit candidate announcements.]
Original Publish Date: 2014-05-01 00:00:00