TAHLEQUAH, Okla. — The Cherokee National Historical Society Board of Directors has selected Cherokee Nation citizen Paul Buckner as the new interim-executive director of the Cherokee Heritage Center, effective immediately.

Cherokee National Historical Society Board President Brenda Partain said Buckner will play a key role during the transition and will allow the board to focus on developing a new strategic plan.

“This is an exciting time at CHC,” Partain said. “We’re working diligently on our master plan and looking forward to all the opportunities that await. However, we can’t lose focus on our day-to-day operations. Paul has years of dedicated service to Cherokee Nation and Cherokee Nation Businesses, and we know he will work hard to continue to advance our mission to preserve, promote and teach Cherokee history, culture and art.”

Buckner has more than 20 years of service to the Cherokee Nation and its businesses and most recently served as the development manager for CHC.

“It is an honor to have the opportunity to work with the talented staff here and support the mission of the Cherokee Heritage Center,” Buckner said. “This place played a significant role in my upbringing, and some of my first memories were spending time out here. This is an important place, and it is an important time to serve. I look forward to working with the new board on our strategic plan, building lasting partnerships and helping author the next chapter for this historic and treasured organization.”

Buckner has a Bachelor of Science in business management from University of Phoenix and a Master of Business Administration from Northeastern State University.

The Cherokee Heritage Center is the premier cultural center for Cherokee history, culture and the arts. It is located at 21192 S. Keeler Drive, Park Hill.