“I’m pleased that our membership voted for the same team to continue to lead our tribal nation,” said Chairman Armenta. “Although we have made significant progress as a tribe, we still have much to accomplish and I’m looking forward to our team continuing to build on our solid foundation.”
Entering his 14th year as a Tribal Chairman, Chairman Armenta has led his tribe from relative obscurity to being one of the most successful tribes in the state. The tribe’s main business enterprise – the Chumash Casino Resort – is a popular entertainment destination that attracts thousands of visitors to the region on a regular basis.
Incumbent Business Committee members David Dominguez, Richard Gomez, Kenneth Kahn and Gary Pace were also re-elected in the tribal election last week.
Gomez, who has been involved in tribal politics for decades, was re-elected to his ninth consecutive term on the tribe’s leadership team. Kahn and Pace were both elected to their sixth terms. Dominguez, who served as Tribal Chairman for nearly a decade in the 1990s, was re-elected to his fifth term as a Business Committee member.
“I am honored to continue to serve my fellow tribal members,” said Gomez, who has served as Vice Chairman. “Over the years my fellow Business Committee members and I have listened to our tribal membership and provided for their needs. I’m glad they continue to recognize and appreciate our leadership abilities.”
Kahn, who has served as the Secretary/Treasurer on the Business Committee, said he is excited about the future. “We have many exciting opportunities to explore and I’m looking forward to helping our tribe make decisions that will benefit the future of the entire membership.”
Dominguez was pleased that he was re-elected once again. “I still have a lot to contribute to our tribe and am happy that I have an opportunity to continue to demonstrate my commitment to our membership,” he said.
Pace was first elected to serve on the Business Committee in 2004 and has dedicated his time to advancing the tribe. “From cultural preservation projects to expanding the tribe’s real estate portfolio, we have worked diligently to ensure the tribe’s continued success,” he said.
The tribe’s Chairman and Business Committee are responsible for establishing policies and overseeing the legal and business affairs of the tribe, while providing for the economic well being of its members. The Business Committee must obtain approval from the tribal membership of the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians for issues regarding managing and directing tribal revenue.
Tribal members nominated candidates for Tribal Chairman and Business Committee in the tribe’s monthly general council meeting in February. Ballots were mailed to eligible voting tribal members (21 years of age and older) and members were also given the option of voting in person on March 1 at the Tribal Hall.
In addition to owning and operating the Chumash Casino Resort on the tribe’s reservation, the tribe also owns Hotel Corque, Root 246 and the Hadsten House in Solvang and two gas stations in Santa Ynez. As the largest employer in the Santa Ynez Valley, the tribe employs more than 1,700 residents of Santa Barbara County.