Pictured second from right, Trixie Bennett stands with other members of the Ketchikan Indian Community Tribal Council in 2022.
(Courtesy of Ketchikan Indian Community)

The former president of Ketchikan’s tribe has stepped down from her role on Ketchikan Indian Community’s tribal council. 

Trixie Bennett announced her resignation during a this week’s council meeting. She cited frequent travel away from family and long hours.

“I love what I do and the people I serve,” Bennett said. “And even though I only have a few months left in my term, I know I need to step down now.”

Bennett took over as the president of the federally recognized tribe early last year, replacing Gloria Burns. She spent a year as president before turning over the reins to Norman Skan earlier this year.

She made access to traditional foods one of her top issues, along with increasing subsistence hunting and fishing opportunities for Ketchikan residents through a new federal designation

Bennett said she plans to keep working on those issues, and hopes to work for Ketchikan Indian Community or another tribal organization in the future. 

“What I want to do in my work going forward, I want to work closer,” she said. “I want to be closer to the work, I want to work closer with the people.”

The tribe is now looking to fill Bennett’s seat. Bennett gave some advice to her successor.

“Someone told me once before, a good leader needs to know when to listen, when to speak up, when to apologize when we are wrong, and push forward with that is what is needed, regardless of what people can think sometimes,” she said.

Any adult member is eligible to apply, and will have the option of giving a 10-minute presentation to the council during a meeting next week. Interested applicants need to submit a letter of interest by noon on April 26.

Raegan Miller is a Report for America corps member for KRBD. Your donation to match our RFA grant helps keep her writing stories like this one. Please consider making a tax-deductible contribution at KRBD.org/donate.