(L to R) South Coffeyville High School Principal Steve Johns, Superintendent Clemo Haddox, Ty Harrington, Paul Ayers, Steve Finney, Cherokee Nation Tribal Council Deputy Speaker Victoria Vazquez, Helen Boomershine, Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr., Steven Billups, Zack Grey, Kenneth Clark, Carl Shufeldt and Billy Shufeldt.
Published March 26, 2016
TAHLEQUAH, OKLAHOMA — The Cherokee Nation donated a 2007 Honda Pilot to South Coffeyville Public Schools earlier this month. The donated sports utility vehicle will be used for the school’s driver’s education program.
Tribal Council Deputy Speaker Victoria Vazquez secured the donation of the Cherokee Nation Businesses surplus vehicle.
“Driver’s education is an essential part of a high school student’s curriculum,” Vazquez said. “When many are looking to make cuts, the tribe is in the fortunate position to help those affected by cuts. I’m so happy the tribe does not sit on its prosperity, but rather invests it back into the community for the good of Cherokees and non-Cherokees alike.”
The school previously used its agriculture education truck for the driver’s education program.
“Budget cuts have been devastating to so many of our schools. I am proud that Cherokee Nation can step up to help,” said Cherokee Nation Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr.
Hoskin and Vazquez also toured the school and learned about other needs from administrators, teachers and students. Superintendent Clemo Haddox thanked the tribal leaders for their commitment to education and the community.
“I would like to extend my gratitude to the Cherokee Nation for standing up and supporting education as a priority. With the state of Oklahoma in a financial hardship and education being directly affected by lack of funding, it is refreshing for this public school superintendent to see the Cherokee Nation stand up for education and invest money back into the schools within the 14 counties of Cherokee Nation,” Haddox said. “Receiving the Honda Pilot for use as the driver’s education vehicle has assisted our program a great deal and is very much appreciated.”
Bill Davis, a Cherokee Nation citizen and president of local Cherokee community organization Native American Fellowship Inc., alerted Vazquez of the need for a vehicle in the school’s program and asked for the tribe’s help.
“Cherokees need to look out for one another and their communities. When I heard the school was using the ag truck for driver’s education, I contacted Councilor Vazquez for help,” Davis said.