Mr. Raymond E. Kinsland
Mr. Kinsland graduated from North Carolina State University in 1958 with a BS Degree in Vocational Education and a North Carolina Teaching Certificate. Upon graduation he returned to Cherokee and began his career as a Vocational Teacher for the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Cherokee Central Schools. He was instrumental in the organization of the Cherokee Boys Club, Inc., and helped the Club to become a non-profit, self-supporting, Tribal Enterprise. In May of 1964, Mr. Kinsland was hired as the General Manager of the Cherokee Boys Club. Under his leadership, the Club grew from 12 employees to over 500 and the budget has increased from $98,000 to $36,000,000.00. He was responsible for the supervision of seven Department Managers and was involved in the overall operation of the entire Club.
He and his wife, Jerri have three daughters, five grandchildren and several foster children and grandchildren. In 1968, he was made an Honorary Member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians as was given the name of “Di-sde-li-sgi-ni-wi-ni” which interpreted means “Helper of Young Men.” He was a member of the Cherokee Historical Association, the North Carolina Bus Association, the American Bus Association, a Board member of the Museum of Cherokee Indians, Board Member of the Boys & Girls Club of America (Cherokee Youth Center), Board Member of the Cherokee Historical Association and a former Board Member of Harris Region Hospital and Mars Hill College. He is a member of Acquoni Baptist Church and sang with a Gospel Quartet. He has donated hundreds of hours to the athletic and other programs of Cherokee Central School.
Mr. Kinsland has received the Distinguished Service Award from the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, the Citizen of the Year Award from the Steve Youngdeer Post of the American Legion, The Frell Owl Award, Unsung Hero Award from the North Carolina High School Athletic Association, The Jefferson Award and most recently an Honorary doctorate from Western Carolina University. In 2017, Mr. Kinsland was awarded the Order of the Long Leaf Pine “for exemplary service to the State of North Carolina and their communities that is above and beyond the call of duty and which has made a significant impact and strengthened North Carolina.” These are just a few of the numerous recognitions and awards he has received for his dedicated service to the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, Cherokee Central School, and the State of North Carolina.