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Terry Tibbetts elected White Earth tribal chairman -- Umsy Tibbetts wins District 3 race for Tribal Council

Terry Tibbetts was elected chairman of the White Earth Band on Tuesday. DETROIT LAKES TRIBUNE/Nathan Bowe1 / 2
Umsy Tibbetts, a distant relative, who was elected District 3 representative on the Tribal Council. DETROIT LAKES TRIBUNE/Nathan Bowe2 / 2

Terry Tibbetts won more than 65 percent of the vote Tuesday to become the next chairman of the White Earth Band of Ojibwe.

He defeated Mindy Iverson 1,269 votes to 674 votes, or 65 percent to 35 percent.

“I’ll be the hardest working, most honest and thorough chairman that we’ve seen for years,” Tibbetts said.

He thanked his supporters and campaign workers, singling out “Moss” Tibbetts, a nephew who worked hard on his campaign and “is like a son to me,” he said.

“This was done for my tribal members, my brothers and sisters, my Anishinaabe people,” he said.

Iverson congratulated Tibbetts and thanked her supporters, family and “the new friends I’ve made,” she said.

“I’ve been blessed to be surrounded by prayer warriors,” Iverson said, adding, “this was the first time I’ve run for office, but it may not be the last.”

Eugene “Umsy” Tibbetts, a distant relative of Terry Tibbetts, won the District 3 seat on the Tribal Council, defeating Barb Fabre 485 votes to 415 votes, or 54 percent to 46 percent.

District 3 includes Callaway, Ogema, White Earth, Pine Point and Elbow Lake.

Umsy Tibbetts said he has never run before and filed for office two minutes before the deadline.

“We have to put our differences aside and work for the people of the reservation,” he said of the tribal Council.

“That’s what elected officials are for – I’ve said it over and over – we don’t work for the tribal council, they work for us.”

He thanked his supporters, as did Fabre.

“I’m glad it’s over,’ she said.

“It’s been a long three months – I’ll be anxious to get back to work.”

It was her third run for office, and her most serious attempt, Fabre said. She visited all the communities, including off the reservation.

“I thought my experience and qualifications would speak for themselves,” she said, crediting Tibbetts with doing a lot of door-knocking and working hard on the campaign trail.

Terry Tibbetts and Umsy Tibbetts will be sworn into office next month.

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