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Tribal leaders won’t seek re-election

Several candidates vie for five seats

— Neither Omak District incumbent is seeking re-election to the Colville Business Council.

Both N. Lynn Palmanteer-Holder and John Sirois are absent from the list of candidates certified last week by the council’s Election Committee.

“It was an honor to be elected by my district, to serve our reservation and support staff and programs positively impacting our youth, elders and working population,” Palmanteer-Holder said.

“My faith does not waver for our tribe to advance. I raise my hands to all (who) serve our tribe in a cultural and respectful way.

“It has been my sincere honor to serve the people with integrity and honesty,” Sirois said. “Our reservation needs leaders in this position to make the best decisions for our land, water and animals.”

Palmanteer-Holder said she decided not to run because she wants to focus her energy on family and to complete her doctoral dissertation.

A doctoral candidate at University of Washington, she has been working for several years on her dissertation in Indian social policy.

“I recognized that politics and leadership are two different roles,” she said. “My intention was to make an impact (and) promote positive change as a tribal leader.

“I have faith my skills will be better utilized outside the tribal government.”

Her goals remain to continue working with the tribe, to promote constitutional reform and end ethics problems on in council business.

The council recently removed Omak District Councilman Benny Marchand from its ranks because of an ethics violation.

Another Omak District representative, Ernest “Sneena” Brooks III, resigned after being arrested in Idaho for rape.

Both positions were filled by the council; the terms expire in 2015.

“My heart and soul will continue to be centered within my tribe and reservation,” Palmanteer-Holder said.

Sirois, too, said family considerations led him to bow out of the council when his term is up in July.

“We have been blessed with the arrival of a beautiful little girl in January, and it was time to make (family) my priority,” he said. “It was my family that sacrificed the most this past year and a half, and I thank them for all the love and support.

“My most important job is to be a dad who is present in the lives of his two wonderful girls.”

Sirois was elected in 2012 and immediately was elected from among the 14-member council to serve as chairman.

He was defeated in his bid for re-election as chairman last July.

Edwin Marchand, Kate Sanchez, James A. McCuen, Shirley K. Charley and John E. Gorr are all seeking to replace Palmanteer-Holder on the board.

Michael Marchand, Darlene J. Burke, Stuart J. Sellars, Launa L. Squetimkin and Duane Hall Sr. have filed to replace Sirois.

Others filing for election, by district, are:

Inchelium, position No. 1 – Incumbent Jim Boyd and Gerald R. “Jerry” Signor.

Inchelium, position No. 2 – Incumbent Michael O. Finley, Marlin R. Simpson, Yvonne L. Swann, Pat Laramie-Brooks and Marvin Joseph Kheel.

Keller, position No. 1 – Incumbent Joseph L. Somday and Darlene Zacherle.

Nespelem, position No. 1 – Incumbent William “Billy” Nicholson II, Amelia (Moses) Marchand and Shawnee N. BearCub.

Nespelem, position No. 2 – Incumbent Nancy Johnson, Harvey Moses Jr., Brian J. Nissen and Charlene BearCub.

The primary election is set for May 3.

Because they attracted just two candidates each, primaries will not take place for Inchelium District Position No. 1 or Keller District Position No. 1.

All the others will have primaries.

The general election will be June 14, with the oath of office scheduled for July 10.

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