O’siyo members of The Cherokee Tribal Nation (CTN) and Texas Clan members
I am the Reverend (Dr.) Alvie “Speaking Bear” Stiefer. I am the Great-Great Grandson of the Principal Chief of the Western Cherokee Nation: Chief Dennis Wolfe Bushyhead. His father is the famous Chief Reverend Jesse Bushyhead Sr. who led several thousand of our people on the Trail of Tears to Oklahoma and help establish the Western Cherokee Nation. He also established the first Cherokee Baptist Church. (Ref. Chronicle of Oklahoma, Vol. 14, no. 3, Sept., 1936.) My cousin Mark "Deerstalker" Stiefer is the Principal Chief of our nation.
I was born in Dallas, Texas and was raised in North East Texas in Cherokee County on a farm near the town of Jacksonville. I spent most of my time in the woods and fishing. I learned most of my heritage from the feet of my Grandmother Stiefer and the feet of my mother's father Alvie B. Crabb, who was also born in Indian Territory Oklahoma in the 1800's.
I spent twenty years in the USAF and five years as a Law Enforcement Deputy where I was injured in the line of duty. I have been around the world twice. I have been in two conflicts, (Grenada & Panama) and one war, (Desert Storm). I have walked close to God since 1978 and I was ordained into His Service in 1979. I have pastored churches in several parts of this world while associated with the USAF and after I retired from the Service, I continued working with churches in isolated parts of Texas. My education is centered around Theology and Human Behaviorism. I have a ThB., ThM. And PhD. in Theology and PFC:D in Family Counseling.
I bring to the Tribe and Nation my role as a Spiritual Leader and my experience as an administrator to use as needed to furtherance of the Cherokee Tribal Nation (CTN). I am also a Historian concerning the history or our people. I was first called Yona Woni, (Speaking Bear or Bear Who Talks) by the Chief of the Florida Seminoles, during a Tasalagi/Seminole Gathering and I have accepted that name as my own.
I currently live in Caney City, TX. where I am semi-retired. I continue to do research and write articles on Theological subjects. I am looking forward to serving the Tribe here in Texas and the Nation as a whole. I have always believed in the personal touch whenever dealing with people. Which means I am always available to help anyway I can for the Tribe. I will treat the tribe as I do my congregation, as a family.
I have been married to Judy for over twenty-five years. We have two children and three grandchildren. Also one Boston Terrier. My hobbies are Hunting, Fishing, Storm Spotting for the National Weather Service, (NWS), Ham Radio, (K5NHY) and playing my Fiddle, (I'm not very good). I am also doing the Genealogy for my family on Ancestry.com right now.
I believe deeply in "Reuniting our lost family". It is time to hear and answer the calling of the Old Ones to resurrect our true heritage. The heritage that has been suppressed, obstructed, and almost forgotten. If we do nothing, our children will never know the richness of their true heritage. It Is Time!