McGhee sworn in on tribal council; Tullis says goodbyePublished 5:29pm Thursday, June 6, 2013
It was an emotional day Thursday for both outgoing Tribal Councilman Eddie Tullis and his replacement, newly elected Tribal Councilman Kevin D. McGhee.
Following Saturday’s PCI tribal elections, McGhee was sworn in to office during the council’s regular meeting, while Tullis bid the position farewell.
Both men fought back tears as they expressed their appreciation to the tribal council and the Poarch people.
“I just want to say thank you to all the supporters,” McGhee said following the ceremony. “I’m honored and privileged to be sitting at this table and for you allowing me to be a leader for our tribe.”
Tullis, who chose not to run for re-election this year, said McGhee was a wonderful successor to his council seat.
“He is fully capable,” Tullis said. “I’m thrilled to relinquish this position to Kevin.”
Tullis also thanked the tribal council for allowing him to serve the Poarch Band for over 40 years.
“I just want to say it’s been a real pleasure serving with you,” Tullis told the council prior to taking a seat in the audience. “I’ve enjoyed this opportunity immensely over the last 45 years.”
McGhee defeated 11 other candidates during Saturday’s election, taking the council seat with a total of 241 votes.
Tullis, who departed the tribal table to a standing ovation, said McGhee and company still have a lot of work to do.
“This tribe has not yet reached its plateau,” he said. “There is still opportunity for this tribe to impact the quality of life for a lot of people.”
Tullis said, while he will no longer be an official part of the PCI government, he does plan on being accessible to both the council and the people of Poarch.
“I’m not going anywhere,” he said. “Well, I may go somewhere, but I won’t go far and I’ll be back. I will continue to try and be as helpful as I can.”
Tullis departs his seat with over four decades of service to the PCI tribe. In May, he was one of six men to be inducted into the Atmore Area Hall of Fame.