Tribal Consortium to Release Annual Economic Report

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Attendees at the Oklahoma Tribal Finance Consortium’s 2022 Fall Conference Wednesday at WinStar World Casino and Resort in Thackerville. (Photo by Shelly Sanderson)

Starting next year, the Oklahoma Tribal Finance Consortium plans to release a Tribal Economic Impact Report annually, rather than every few years as in the past.

Oklahoma Tribal Finance Consortium’s latest statewide impact report includes data from 2019, which found tribal activities supported $15.6 billion in goods and services, 5.4 billion in wages and benefits and 113,442 jobs in Oklahoma.

Co-founded by Victor Flores and the Native American Financial Officers Association, the OTFC measures the economic impact of tribal nations on the state.

Flores, who serves as OTFC President, will announce the new reporting schedule at the Oklahoma Tribal Finance Consortium Fall 2022 Conference, currently underway at WinStar World Casino and Resort in Thackerville, hosted by the Chickasaw Nation.

Between 200 and 250 attendees are expected, with current registrants representing 20 of Oklahoma’s 38 federally recognized tribes, Flores said. Guests also include representatives from four Kansas tribal nations and three Texas tribal nations, Flores said.

“The purpose of this event is not only to network, but also to learn from each other, to learn from each other, to help each other in economic development,” said Flores.

“There won’t be anyone from the casinos, because with the casinos there’s a lot of competition, but with our tribal governments there’s no competition,” Flores said. “We want to help each other and we value collaboration. »

Participating companies include several accounting firms, bankers and economic development organizations who will provide an educational component to the activities planned for the event.

Attendees include chiefs, presidents, presidents, treasurers and secretaries, chief financial officers, chief financial officers and economic development leaders from tribal nations, Flores said.

“And then also because we also provide tribal health education, we usually have tribal health financial directors as well as tribal health board members and tribal health executive directors,” Flores said.

The event includes the Princesses of the Chickasaw Nation leading the opening prayer, a welcome from Chickasaw Governor Bill Anoatubby, and an awards presentation with Chickasaw Nation Under Secretary of Commerce Dakota Cole.

Travis Watts, member of the Choctaw Nation and director of the Oklahoma City Area Indian Health Service, will deliver a keynote address.

Further discussions are planned regarding water rights and murdered and missing indigenous women. Artist DG Smalling will raffle off paintings from the event and a cellist will provide entertainment.

The consortium’s next event is scheduled for Wyandotte’s Indigo Sky Casino in March 2023.

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