STONEWALL — Melvin Burris, 53, Stonewall, served as a Chickasaw tribal legislator from 2002 to 2005 and is making a bid for the office again.

“Thank you for the support in the past,” he said. “I am asking for your vote! I consider it my main job to help Chickasaw people however I can. As your tribal legislator, I will always work for you and help you whenever you need me.”

Burris said he believes every vote is important and he can bring the strength of the tribe to voters and their families. He said he believes in jobs and supports a job training center for Chickasaws and good jobs for Chickasaws, both within the tribe and outside. He said he supports top quality health care and has supported increased funding for Chickasaw specific medical programs. Burris supported funding increases in scholarships and clothing grants for Chickasaw students while serving on the legislative education committee. “Good programs for Chickasaw elders are a priority for me. I support senior sites and proposed nursing centers,” Burris said.

Burris’ education included graduation from Tupelo High School and the Oklahoma State School of Horseshoeing. He graduated from an Oklahoma Police Academy and worked for the Coalgate police department and as security for the Chickasaw Nation. Burris served eight years in the U.S. Army National guard.

Burris has supported the county volunteer fire departments through participation in fishing tournaments. Burris said he feels his highest award came from the Allen High School in 2004 when he was asked to deliver the commencement speech to the graduating class. Other 2004 honors coming from Allen include the naming of the Melvin Burris Baseball Field at Allen, the Mustang Award from the Allen Board of Education, an award for dedication and service from Allen Chamber of Commerce, and an award from the Johnson Chapel United Methodist Church for work and dedication. In 2003 Burris received the Non-Mason Award from the Allen Community.

Burris said he did whatever it took as a single father to raise his two boys, Adam and Josh, the right way. He made sure his boys were involved in school and enriching outside activities. “I’m proud of Adam who recently graduated from Seminole State College and Josh is now attending Murray State College,” said Burris.

Burris is the son of Mrs. Sebena Burris of Ada, the grandson of the late Willie D. Burris Stick and the great-grandson of full-blood Chickasaw original enrollee Elminy Porter Stick.

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