Incumbants advance in primary election on Fond du Lac ReservationCurrent Fond du Lac Reservation Tribal Chairwoman Karen Diver will move on to the general election on June 10 following her successful bid in Tuesday’s primary election.
By: Wendy Johnson, Pine Journal
Current Fond du Lac Reservation Tribal Chairwoman Karen Diver will move on to the general election on June 10 following her successful bid in Tuesday’s primary election.
Incumbents Eugene Reynolds (District I-Cloquet representative) and Roger “Bouda” Smith (District III-Brookston representative) were also successful in gaining a spot on the June ballot.
A field of five candidates threw their hats in the ring for the position of tribal chairman in Tuesday’s primary, with nine candidates filing for each of the district representative positions. The top two vote-getters for each position will move on to the general election.
In the race for tribal chair, Diver received 548 votes, with challenger Patty Petite coming in second at 267. Reynolds garnered 194 votes for the position of District I representative, followed by Wally Dupuis at 175. Smith received 45 votes in the contest for District III representative, followed by Anna Wait who polled 42.
Diver has served as tribal chairwoman since being seated through a special election in January 2007, replacing Peter Defoe after he stepped down from office with one year remaining in his term. Diver is a 1987 graduate of the University of Minnesota-Duluth Labovitz School of Business and Economics and earned a masters degree in public administration from Harvard University in 2003. She most recently worked at the Fond du Lac Reservation as an administrator in the Economic Development Commission as well as director of special projects.
Petite holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a master’s of education degree from the University of Minnesota-Duluth, as well as a doctorate of education degree from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities. She has worked on the reservation for the past 24 years, including as a medical social worker at the Min-no-aya-win Clinic, director of Fond du Lac Head Start and most recently as president of Fond du Lac Tribal College.
Reynolds has served as District I representative for the past four years. He is a retiree from the Potlatch Corporation.
Challenger Dupuis has worked in law enforcement for the past 19 years, including positions as a conservation officer, Cloquet police officer and as director of Fond du Lac Law Enforcement.
In the District III race, Smith has represented the Brookston District on the Reservation Business Committee for the past four years. Prior to that time, he worked in law enforcement for nine years, first with the patrol division of the St. Louis County Sheriff’s Department assigned to the Fond du Lac Reservation area and later as the first chief of police with the Fond du Lac Law Enforcement Department.
Challenger Wait, a 20-year resident of the Brookston District, has worked in the Elderly Nutrition Program on the Fond du Lac Reservation for the past 13 years.
All six candidates will now move on the the reservation’s general election, set for Tuesday, June 10.
Pine Journal Publisher/ reporter Wendy Johnson can be contacted at: email@example.com.