"The Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians made history this week electing its first female chief, but the choice of a new leader has broad economic implications for the state, as well.
Chief-elect Phyliss Anderson, 50, from the Red Water community in Leake County, defeated incumbent Beasley Denson, 61, Wednesday. In 2007, Denson defeated Phillip Martin, who was elected in 1979 and died in 2010.
As far as can be remembered, Anderson is the first female chief of the Choctaws in Mississippi, going back before statehood in 1817.
Anderson, however, was low-key about the significance of her achievement. As reported by The Clairon-Ledger, she said the election was "never about gender," but "was about leadership.""
Get the Story:
Editorial: Choctaws: History made in Miss.
(The Jackson Clarion-Ledger 7/8)
Related Stories:First woman to lead Mississippi Choctaws wants
to be called chief
(7/7) Mississippi Choctaws pick
Phyliss Anderson as first woman chief
(7/6)Mississippi Choctaw chief and top rival head to
run-off in July
results from election for Mississippi Choctaw chief
(6/15) Another candidate enters Mississippi Choctaw chief
(4/21)Candidate for Mississippi
Choctaw chief challenges incumbent
Join the Conversation