New chairman for Crow Tribe, Frank White Clay, is sworn in

By 
The Associated Press
Thursday, December 10, 2020
New chairman for Crow Tribe, Frank White Clay, is sworn in
Photo by Nacoma Jefferson
Crow Tribal Chief Judge Dennis Bear Don’t Walk swears in Frank White Clay Monday as the new chairman of the Crow Tribe. At 38 years old, White Clay is the youngest chairman in recent memory. He defeated incumbent Alvin “AJ” Not Afraid after securing 58% of the vote in November’s tribal general election.

Frank White Clay has been sworn in as the new chairman of the Crow Tribe.

White Clay was given his new position in an outdoor inauguration ceremony on Monday.

White Clay had previously been a representative for two terms in the Crow Legislature. He represented the Black Lodge District in the north of th reservation.

He defeated incumbent Alvin “AJ” Not Afraid after securing 58% of the vote in November’s tribal general election.

In his campaign, White Clay called on the government to be more accountable and transparent with its finances, the Billings Gazette reported. He also called on the tribe to implement a more effective coronavirus response system.

Big Horn County, which encompasses parts of the tribe’s land, announced Wednesday that the 53rd person had died in the county due to the virus.

The number of infections is thought to be far higher because many people have not been tested, and studies suggest people can be infected with the virus without feeling sick.

White Clay had unseated incumbent A.J. Not Afraid in the November election. White Clay received 1,978 votes while Not Afraid received 1,428, according to preliminary results reported by tribal officials.

Lawrence DeCrane, a local legislator, was elected vice chairman as part of the election. Levi Black Eagle was elected secretary and Channis D. Whiteman was chosen for vice secretary.

“I know that not all of us voted for these officers, but we have to pull together now,” said Bill Yellowtail, a former state senator who ran for Montana’s U.S. House seat as a Democrat in 1996.

For most people, the new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some — especially older adults and people with existing health problems — it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia, and death.

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