Cherokee Nation Tribal Councilor and lifelong Cherokee County resident Wes Nofire was born at W.W Hastings Hospital in Tahlequah and graduated from Sequoyah High School in Tahlequah. His lifelong commitment to the Cherokee Nation and the Cherokee people extends to his current time on the tribal council.
Nofire has often been the lone voice exposing corruption, addressing transparency in government programs and spending, and helping Cherokee Nation citizens from all corners of the tribe navigate the Cherokee Nation’s bureaucratic government.
For the past three and a half years, Wes Nofire has fought for citizens whose constitutional rights were violated under the Hoskin administration. Nofire fought for Sequoyah students whose education and extracurricular activities were sidelined by COVID after other schools determined it was safe to return to the classroom. Nofire fought for victims of domestic violence whose cases were ignored by the Hoskin administration following the McGirt decision. Nofire fought for employees in low-wage positions enduring hostile and abusive environments. Nofire also listened to victims of sexual harassment, emotional abuse and political intimidation recount how their jobs have been threatened or terminated for reporting the abuse they’ve endured.
Nofire is a previously nationally-ranked boxer and local business owner in the Tahlequah area. He has the passion, vigor and unique skill set to lead and reform wasteful and hidden expenditures; allow Cherokee Nation citizens input on spending tribal dollars; refocus priorities on people, not personal pocketbooks; and put an end to the corruption that has plagued the Cherokee Nation government for so many years.
Nofire singled out two of the largest opportunities of the last three and a half years as particular sources of consternation: The handling of more than $4 billion in federal COVID relief funds and the Hoskin administration’s bungling of the Supreme Court’s McGirt decision.
Nofire has been a vocal critic of the Hoskin administration’s fumbling of one of the most important judicial rulings in the history of Indian Country. The McGirt decision determined Congress never disestablished the Cherokee Nation reservation reservations and the reservations of the other Five Tribes. The Cherokee Nation was caught entirely off-guard and, since a failed attempt to cede sovereignty to the state of Oklahoma, has made crucial errors at every point.
“I will always fight for our tribal sovereignty. I will fight for tribal sovereignty as hard as I’ve fought for our Cherokee people in tribal council meetings and as hard as I fought opponents in the boxing ring. But sovereignty without accountability and transparency is nothing but a farce.” -Wes Nofire
Nofire and his wife Molly have been married for 11 years. They raise their three children in Cherokee County, just like the generations of Nofire’s family before him. Nofire says his family and faith help him understand the need to protect Cherokee Nation citizens’ constitutional rights and create a future where future generations have the equal opportunity to thrive.