Chippewa Cree Tribe returns ousted leader to chairman's post

Ken St. Marks. Photo from Native News Project / University of Montana

For the third time in as many years, Ken St. Marks has won election as chairman of the Chippewa Cree Tribe in Montana.

St. Marks defeated three rivals in a special election on Tuesday. Two candidates said they don't plan to dispute their loss so it appears he might actually be seated without challenge.

"I wish the chairman the best of luck," Jonathan Windy Boy, a state senator who came in third in the election, told The Havre Daily DNews. "That's what the people wanted. If it's going to happen, it'll happen."

St. Marks has repeatedly faced criticism from his fellow tribal council members who have accused him of theft and misconduct even though he has never been charged with any crimes in any court. He has been removed from office twice only to win yet another election.

Meanwhile, a slew of other tribal leaders and executives have either been indicted or pleaded guilty as part of a large federal corruption probe on the reservation. The effort has put Montana on top of a nationwide list of judicial districts with the most government corruption prosecutions.

St. Marks has openly stated that he supports the efforts of the Guardians Project, as it is known in the U.S. Attorney's Office in Montana.

Get the Story:
St. Marks re-elected chair of tribal business council (AP 2/5)
St. Marks wins in Rocky Boy - again (The Havre Daily News 2/4)

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