Little River Band of Ottawa Indians Ogema Larry Romanelli
MANISTEE, MICHIGAN — Prelimenary results indicate Larry Romanelli was reelected ogema (chairman) of the Little River Band of Ottawa Indians last Friday, April 24, 2015. Ogema Romanelli will serve an unprecedented third term.
Romanelli’s decisive win was the first time in the modern history of the tribe that an ogema had been re-elected twice to serve as the head of this tribe.
From the beginning, Ogema Romanelli has led the expansion team working in both Lansing and Washington as the tribe pursues a second casino site in Muskegon. He served as the two-term elected chairman of the United Tribes of Michigan, a 12-tribal nation coalition where he currently is the sitting elected Treasurer and he is a familiar face in Washington concerning national tribal issues.
In other races, four new Tribal Council representatives have won seats including, Joseph Riley II, Ronald Wittenberg, Jessica Lynn Burger and Sandy “Peanut” Lewis.
In Judicial contests, Daniel T. Bailey won re-election to the seat of Office of Chief Judge. Joseph J. LaPorte won the Appellate Court Judge – Elder seat and Melissa L. Pope won re-election as Appellate Court Judge-Attorney.
Two members won seats on the Election Board. Tammy Bowen was re-elected and Karen Love also won a seat.
Voter turnout was high with 55.20% of the registered voters casting ballots. There is a one week challenge period after which the Election Board may certify the vote.