My name is Maria Whitehorn. I am happy to announce my candidacy for reelection to Osage Nation Congress. I respectfully ask for your vote.
Interest in our tribal government started when I was a child. My father, Dudley Whitehorn, would come home from work talking about his day. Those conversations were filled with information about our developing tribal programs, which provided service to the Osage people. I liked our conversations, and at the time, never realized how our exchanges developed my interest to serve.
In 2012, I was elected to the Osage Nation Congress and it has been an honor to serve you. I am ever mindful of the great responsibility entrusted to me acting as your representative. I listen to you, research and understand the issues, communicate well with my colleagues, and understand our underlying laws and processes. I am always aware the issues before Congress are your issues, and cast my vote accordingly.
Good legislation is always a collaborative effort between the legislator, the administrator, and the people it serves. I choose to work collaboratively and have written several pieces of successful legislation. ONCA 13-10 provides vehicle registration and tags at no cost to our Elders and Disabled Veterans. I have drafted legislation that has earned over $1 million of revenue for the Osage Nation by creating a Tobacco Tax Relief Fund (ONCA 13-102). The Osage people amended Article XV Section 3 the Osage Nation Constitution in the last general election, which inserted clarifying language to “ensure the rights of mineral royalty interest holders of Osage descent …” (ONCR 13-22). I worked diligently presenting the amendment in many forums, such as Congress, Minerals Council and ultimately the Osage people. I will continue to listen to your voices and respond with solutions.
I have always supported direct benefits to the people through the Osage Scholarship, Health Benefit and Burial Assistance Funds and have a conservative approach to spending. A review of my legislation and voting record will bear the proof. I recognize the need and advocate for a comprehensive, focused economic development strategy.
I was chair and member of the Water Rights Task Force, an appointed executive task force, under the Red Eagle and Standing Bear administration until it was dissolved. It is important the Osage Nation continue pursuing its water rights. I support purchasing land, as we can afford when it is available.
My husband, Randy and I live in Hominy, Oklahoma where we own two businesses and partner in a cattle operation with my siblings on our original family allotment. We have two sons, Mason, who attends The University of Tulsa and Andrew, who is completing high school studies while working at the family business.
I would like to say thank you to the Osage People for the opportunity to serve. I love the work. I will continue to be steadfast in my support of a sustainable Osage Nation, working diligently to establish the way for our future generations of Osage People.
Original Publish Date: 2016-04-18 00:00:00