The advisory board for the Cherokee Center is comprised of representatives from the
Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians and Western Carolina University. The board meets
once every quarter to provide continued support for the Cherokee Center director and
activities. Please read below for a list of advisory board members and their current
principal chief of the Eastern band of Cherokee indians, richard sneed
Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians Principal Chief Richard G. Sneed - is veteran of
the United States Marine Corps., an entrepreneur/business owner and a former educator
with Cherokee Central Schools where he was a vocational Instructor for 11 years. He
is also a recipient of the 2013 National Indian Education Association's National Classroom
Teacher of the Year. Chief Sneed loves to speak to the many surrounding communities
and share his insight of higher education and leadership.
Vice Provost for Academic Affairs, Dr. carol burton
Carol has more than 25 years of experience at WCU and previous to her assuming the
Acting Provost role this semester, served as Associate Provost for Undergraduate Studies
at WCU since 2007. She is now in her new role at Vice Provost of Academic Affairs.
Carol earned her doctorate from North Carolina State University in adult and higher
education and her baccalaureate and master’s degrees from WCU in nutrition/dietetics
and agency counseling, respectively.
chief diversity officer, ricardo nizario-colon
Ricardo Nazario-Colon – Chief Diversity Officer - Accomplished Higher Education Administrator
with over twenty years of experience in various industries including the U.S. Military,
Colleges & Universities, Corporate Banking and State Government. A high level of independence,
organizational loyalty and self-discipline. A critical analyst with the ability to
transfer ideas into practice.
executive director of educational outreach, dr. susan fouts
Fouts holds a doctoral degree in adult and community college education from North
Carolina State University, where her studies focused on the areas of training and
development and lifelong learning. She also earned a bachelor’s degree in clinical
laboratory science and a master’s degree in business administration from Western.
Prior to joining Western’s Division of Distance and Continuing Education, Fouts served
as the director of workforce development for the business-led Southwestern Workforce
Development Board in Bryson City.
During her tenure, the board completed a major study of the workforce and set an action
agenda to address some of the workforce issues of the region. Fouts performed training
needs analysis for business and developed training plans to meet those needs.
She served on several state committees and task force, including the North Carolina
Workforce Commission’s dislocated worker task force that developed best practices
for responses to dislocations and plant closures. She also helped develop strategic
plans for area businesses and organizations to increase their competitiveness in the
Fouts has worked as a business and industry training coordinator and a director of
continuing education in the community college system.
assistant vice chancellor for undergraduate enrollment, dr. Phil Cauley
Two-time graduate of WCU. Undergraduate degree in English and a master’s degree in
Human Resource Development. Began working at WCU in 1984. Has held various positions
at WCU, including director of admission, director of enrollment management for graduate
and distance learning, and alumni director. Currently serve as assistant vice chancellor
for undergraduate enrollment within the Division of Student Affairs.
Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, richard starnes
Richard Starnes - has served as Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences since 2012.
A historian and a WCU graduate, he teaches and writes about the American South and
Distinquished Sequoyah Professorship, Mr. Brett Riggs - Co-Chair
A research archaeologist at UNC-CH since 2001, he worked previously as deputy tribal
historical preservation officer for the Eastern Band. Riggs has an extensive list
of publications and reports credits and has presented at numerous professional meetings
and conferences. A board member for Friends of Junaluska and the Junaluska Museum,
he also serves as executive board member for the National Trail of Tears Association
in Little Rock, Arkansas, and was Native Affairs Liaison Committee chair for the southeastern
Archaeological Conference. Riggs earned his doctorate and master’s degree in anthropology
from the University of Tennessee and his bachelor’s degree in anthropology from Wake
Secretary - Mr. Elias Huskey
Elias Huskey, an enrolled member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians from the
Big Cove Community, former Junaluska Leadership Council Chairman and Football State
Champion (Once runner-up) graduated from Swain County High School in 2013. He is the
former chairman of the Junaluska Leadership Council and is a 2013 alumni of the Remember
the Removal bike ride that travels from New Echota, GA to Tahlequah, OK. As the Administrative
Support for the Cherokee Center, Huskey works to provide excellent support to the
Director of the Cherokee Center and his community.
former tribal council member, mrs. anita lossiah
An enrolled member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, Ms. Lossiah earned her
Juris Doctor at the University of Denver Sturm College of Law and her bachelor’s degree
from the University of Mississippi. Following undergraduate school, she worked as
an optician for 11 years. Following law school, she first worked for the tribe’s Prosecutor’s
Office and then the tribe’s Office of the Attorney General. After working in tribal
government for 11 years, she was elected to office as the Yellowhill Tribal Council
Representative where she served one term. Ms. Lossiah is currently the Policy Analyst
for the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, and always a strong promoter of higher education
for enrolled members.
community member, mrs. mary wachacha
Mary began her federal career in June of 1971 when she joined the Peace Corps and
served for 2 and ½ years as a Professor at a Women’s College in Kasserine, Tunisia
in northern Africa. Upon returning to Cherokee, NC in 1975 Mary was hired by the Bureau
of Indian Affairs as an elementary school teacher for the Cherokee Central School
In August of 1988, Mary transferred to the Indian Health Service working at the Cherokee
Indian Hospital as a Health Educator. In 1990, Mary was promoted to the Nashville
Area IHS Office as the Area Consultant for the Office of Health Programs. In 1997,
Mary was promoted to the IHS Headquarters Office in Rockville, MD where she served
as the Director of the Community Health Representative (CHR) Program. In 2000, Mary
was selected to serve as the Program Director for the Office of Clinical and Community
Services supervising 8 IHS Programs: Medical Records, Nutrition, HIV/AIDS, Pharmacy,
Head Start, Maternal and Child Health, Health Promotion and Disease Prevention, as
well as Health Education.
In 2003 Mary was served as the Lead Consultant for IHS Headquarters providing leadership,
training and oversight to tribal and IHS programs across IHS on a wide variety of
health care issues. Throughout her 25-year tenure with IHS, Mary was also a Budget
Writer for the IHS and assisted in the submission of Budget Justifications to Congress
as well as reports, statistics and data to Congress. As Lead Consultant, Mary supervised
approximately 75 employees and was responsible for the administration of a $19 million
Mary, the daughter of John and Frances Gloyne, is an enrolled member of the Eastern
Band of Cherokee Indians, Cherokee, NC and is married to Arnold Wachacha and they
have 4 grown children and 4 grandchildren. Mary and Arnold live in the Yellowhill
community on the Qualla Boundary.
Regional direct marketing manager, Mr. Charles Myers
Charlie is a 1993 graduate of Western Carolina University with a B.S.B.A. in Economics
and Finance. Charlie has enjoyed a variety of roles in his career, including roles
with First Citizens Bank, the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, Cherokee Preservation
Foundation, and Harrah’s Cherokee Casino. He is currently Regional Manager of Direct
Marketing for Harrah’s Cherokee and Valley River casinos. He has served on several
boards and committees, including the Tribal Casino Gaming Enterprise Board of Advisors,
Sequoyah National Golf Club Board of Directors, WCU 2020 Strategic Plan, NC Network
of Grantmakers Board of Directors, and the Summit Charter School Board. Charlie is
a member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. He and his wife, Pam, and their
son Camden live in Sylva, near WCU’s Cullowhee Campus.
Secretary of Human Resources, Ms. Tara Reed
Bachelors of Business Administration -2006 Montreat College
Prior Work History: February 1998-May 2017 I held the position of Recruiter for Harrah’s
Cherokee for 16 years and that included international recruiting and traveling. 1.5
years as a Regional Talent Development Manager. Overseen the Training Department for
HCCR for the Cherokee and Murphy property.
June 2017 Moved to the EBCI as the Secretary of Human Resources-complete oversight
of Benefits, Employment, Training, Compensation, and Employee Relations.
Secretary of education, Mr. james bradley
James Bradley is a member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee and resides in the Wolfetown
Community. He graduated from Cherokee High School in 1981, completed his Bachelor
of Fine Arts at UNC-Greensboro in 1986 and received his Masters in Entertainment Business
from Full Sail University in 2010. In June 2017 James was appointed as the Secretary
of Education for the Eastern Band of Cherokee. Previously he was the Advertising/PR/Sponsorship
Supervisor for Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort, a Manager Intern in the Harrah’s Cherokee
Leadership Development Program, the Fiscal & Training Supervisor in the Tribal Education
Program, Executive Director of the Cherokee Historical Association, Program Director
at the Cherokee Preservation Foundation, and the founding director of the Cherokee
Youth Center Boys and Girls Club. He serves on the WCU Cherokee Center Advisory Board
and is a member of the Native Leader Institute through the American Indian Center
at UNC Chapel Hill. He has also been a board member for the Friends of Mountain History
and the Musical Theater Advisory Board at Western Carolina University.
assistant vice chancellor for student affairs, mrs. Jane adams-dunford
Jane Adams-Dunford is the Assistant Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs at Western
Carolina University in Cullowhee, NC. With 30 years of experience in Higher Education,
Jane is passionate about lifelong learning, diversity and inclusion and being a champion
for students. As a first-generation student, she believes that work in student affairs
should promote an environment conducive to growth and discovery. Her diverse experience
in Student Affairs includes: organizational development, strategic planning, program
assessment, leadership development, and student access and success.
Jane was awarded the Western Carolina University Paul A. Reid Distinguished Service
Award for administrative staff for 2015 - 2016. She is active in the Student Affairs
and higher education community. Her involvement includes being a member and serving
in many roles for the Southern Association of College Student Affairs (SACSA), National
Association of Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA), American Association of University
Women (AAUW), Phi Beta Delta - International Honor Society, and Omicron Delta Kappa
- Leadership Honor Society.
Jane received a Master’s in Psychology and a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer
Information Systems from Cameron University in Lawton, Oklahoma where she worked as
the Director of Multicultural and Disability Services for 10 years. Her interests
include working with youth, music, traveling, sports, community involvement with her
sorority and spending time with her family.
former chief and board of trustee member, mrs. joyce dugan
Joyce Dugan is the first and only woman to hold the office of Principal Chief of the
Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. Before she retired from public service in 2011,
Chief Dugan served as her tribe’s Director of Public, Government and Community Relations
and as the Superintendent of the Cherokee School System. In 2006, she was awarded
an Honorary Doctorate from the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill for her cultural
preservation efforts. She currently serves on the Cherokee Indian Hospital Governing
Board, the Development Foundation Board of Directors, the North Carolina Center for
the Advancement of Teaching, and the Western Carolina University’s Board of Trustees.
associate director of undergraduate admissions, mr. patrick frazier
Patrick Frazier has been a part of the Office of Undergraduate Admissions since 2007.
Patrick is currently the Associate Director of Marketing and Recruitment for Undergraduate
Admissions. A native of Jackson County, Patrick graduated from Western Carolina University
with a Bachelors in Business Management in Administration in 2007 and a Masters in
Project Management in 2011. He is currently working towards the completion of a Doctoral
Degree in Higher Education Administration and Leadership at Texas Tech University.
Additionally, Patrick is currently serving as President for the Carolinas Association
of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (CACRAO) organization.
cultural arts director at Cherokee central schools, mr. Yona wade
Wade’s background is in performing arts and he holds an undergraduate degree in Opera
from the University of the North Carolina School of Arts in Winston-Salem and a graduate
degree in Performing Arts Management from the same institution.