In accordance with the Constitution of the Southeastern Mvskoke Nation, Article IV, the Nation's Tribal Council is composed of the Chief, Vice-Chief, Secretary, Treasurer, and Councilor-at-Large. The Chief of the Tribal Council serves for a term of four years, while all other officers of the Tribal Council are to serve for two years. All Tribal Council members must be qualified to vote, be 21 years of age or older as of the election date (but 25 in the case of the office of Chief), have been a citizen of the Tribe for at least three years by the election date, not have been convicted of a felony, and agree, if elected, to take the Oath of Office set forth in the Constitution.
Chief Michelle Gilmore was first elected as at-large Councilor before being appointed as Vice Chief by former Chief Ronnie Williams. She was elected as Chief in 2019. Chief Gilmore was appointed by Governor Kay Ivey of Alabama to serve as a Commissioner of the Alabama Indian Affairs Commission in 2022.
After graduating from high school Chief Gilmore entered the Paper and Printing Industry and became the first female in local market outside sales and went on to become the General Manager of a local paper company, before going on to work at the Alabama Department of Transportation and serve her Tribe. Chief Gilmore has four sons with her husband, U.S. Army Sgt. Major Gerry Gilmore, named Justin, Josh, Alex, and Max, and one grandson.
The Chief is a strong advocate for the Tribes of Alabama and has a clear vision for the Southeastern Mvskoke Nation's growth. Chief Gilmore recently appeared on a PBS/APT documentary entitled "Another River to Cross" that documents the history of the Alabama Creek Indians to raise awareness for Indigenous issues.
Eugene McCarley was first elected to the Tribal Council in 2019 as at-large Councilor. In 2023 he was elected as Vice Chief. After graduating from high school in Lanett, Alabama, he attended the institution now known as Lee University.
Vice Chief McCarley served in ministry as a pastor and evangelist for 43 years in the Church of God. He retired from pastoral ministry in 2010 and continued to serve on the Spirit Care Board, among others. Serving in ministry prepared the Vice Chief for Tribal servant-leadership. Eugene and his wife, Ann, have two children, Fran and Christy, six grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren.
Mrs. Rudeseal-Arnold previously served one term on the council, and served on the geneaology and enrollment committees prior to that, before being elected as Secretary in 2023. Secretary Rudeseal-Arnold graduated Cum Lauda from the University of Montevallo in 2007 with a B.S. in Biology and earned her ADN-Rn from Jefferson State Community College in 2020. She is presently enrolled at the University of Alabama at Birmingham to complete her MS-FNP.
Growing up with two parents who were both Tribal members, the significance of the Creek language and culture were emphasized in her household. She is a strong advocate for preserving Creek language and culture and sharing it with future generations. Mrs. Rudeseal-Arnold and her husband William Arnold own a working ranch, and her children compete in several rodeo associations across the State of Alabama. Mrs. Rudeseal-Arnold has also competed in the National Cutting Horse Association and went to the Eastern National Championships in 2004.
In accordance with the Constitution of the Southeastern Mvskoke Nation, the Treasurer shall supervise the financial affairs of the Nation in accordance with the administrative procedures detailed in the Tribe's Bylaws. This is to include maintaining all financial books, records, ledgers, receipts, and accounts; preparing an annual budget for submission to the Council at least thirty (30) days prior to the Annual Meeting; providing current written financial reports at all meetings of the Tribal Council and all official meetings.
In accordance with the duties established by the Tribal Council pursuant to the Constitution of the Southeastern Mvskoke Nation, Councilors-at-Large represent the interests of tribal members, assist in the duties of other councilmembers, and are tasked with special projects as they arise.
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