Vol. LIV No. 1
January 2019

Chickasaws have a great winning tradition, culture of success

Stickball and other traditional games are the foundation of a great sporting heritage Chickasaws have extended into modern times. In recent years, Chickasaws have achieved great success as players and coaches in sports such as football, wrestling, golf basketball and softball.

Chickasaws also have a great entrepreneurial heritage that began long before European contact in wide-ranging trade over a large area of North America.

It is no surprise Chickasaw people have achieved success in both arenas, because many of the elements crucial to success in sports are also vital to business success, including a talented leadership team, an effective strategy and the ability to implement that strategy.

We have developed a very talented group of managers and executives. Many of them have risen through the ranks, becoming leaders among their peers long before they were placed in formal leadership positions.

That long-term, wide ranging experience has helped our leadership team develop a unique understanding of the environment, from the nuances of the marketplace to the rules and regulations governing our operations both in our businesses and in our programs and services.

We understand that we are constantly under close scrutiny, so our leadership team makes it a point to operate within Federal policy and abide by all the laws, rules and regulations applicable to our operations. Some of our success can be attributed to the fact that we have been meticulous in developing the proper procedures necessary for strict adherence to the sometimes complex and intricate web of rules and regulations.

That insight and experience has enabled our leaders to become very effective in strategic planning for business development and service delivery. Our leadership team is continuously searching for opportunities to develop new businesses, services and programs as well as expand existing operations.

They have also been very successful in ensuring that strategic plan is implemented efficiently. Our hard-working, dedicated employees understand the important role they play in helping to meet our mission of enhancing the overall quality of life of the Chickasaw people.

Effective planning and skillful implementation has enabled us to achieve exceptional financial success, rapid growth and diversification of our business portfolio and expansion of available services.

Today, we operate more than 100 businesses, including a bank, a manufacturing facility, a chocolate factory, hotels, casinos and many others. Successful business development has enabled us to fund and operate well over a hundred programs and services ranging from healthcare, housing and education to career advancement and small business development.

A recent study showed that our diverse business portfolio combined with our wide range of programs and services resulted in a positive economic impact of more than $3.2 billion in Oklahoma in 2015, and generates more than 18,300 jobs in the state.

That positive impact on the economy benefits a wide range of tribal and non-tribal businesses, including hotels, restaurants, convenience stores and more. We firmly believe that a rising tide lifts all boats.

We have always understood that our actions impact other tribes directly and indirectly and we strive to conduct all our operations in a manner that benefits other tribes as well as our other neighbors.

Global Gaming Solutions, established to expand our own business opportunities while also helping other tribes establish or enhance their own gaming operations, is only one example.

Developing partnerships offering advantages to everyone involved has long been an important part of our strategy for economic development, business diversification and service delivery.

In our economic development and in delivery of services, we work closely with our neighbors because we believe it is important to make a positive contribution to our community. We want many of the same things as our neighbors, access to quality healthcare, effective education, safety and security for our families and a brighter future for our children and grandchildren. We work hard to develop partnerships and good working relationships in our communities so that we all benefit.  We are neighbors working together to help each other. We have developed a variety of working relationships with schools, ranging from offering arts instruction programs at elementary and secondary schools to creating endowed chairs at universities. We also work closely with state and local government on a variety of issues ranging from law enforcement services to infrastructure development projects such as roads as well as water treatment and delivery systems.

We are also involved with a number of organizations to promote medical research, domestic violence prevention services, disaster relief and other charities focused on enhancing the quality of life of the community.

We are honest and forthright in our business dealings and in our relationships, because we place an even higher value on honor and integrity than on financial success.

As Chickasaws, we can all be proud that we have built on the culture of business success that is such a vital part of our heritage. We can also be proud that Chickasaws continue to place a high priority on taking care of one another and being a good neighbor to those around us.

That makes us all winners!