Youth Golf Program Ends

Jane and Ed Metcalf, at left, celebrate the final distribution of donations from the Southwestern Oregon Youth Golf program. With them, from left, are Scott Millhouser of Bandon Dunes; Andre Liloc of Coos Golf Club; Bridgett Wheeler, the Coquille Indian Tribe’s culture and education director; and committee members Miling Layguui, Terry Springer and Larry Simpson.

Couple aided young players for 20 years

May 14, 2021

A Coquille Tribal couple’s 20-year mission to inspire young golfers has come to an end.

Since 2001, Ed and Jane Metcalf have poured their passion into the Southwestern Oregon Youth Golf Program, with help from the Coquille Indian Tribe, a volunteer committee and generous local golfers. Over the years the Metcalfs have collected and distributed about $200,000 for college scholarships, golf camps and clinics, and high school golf teams.

“Way back when, Ed and I golfed a lot, and we wanted to see the youth of Coos County have access to golf activities,” Jane Metcalf said. “We just had a passion for golf for the youth.”

But even passion can’t hold back time. Jane Metcalf is 73, her husband 75.

“We’re getting to the age where it’s getting really hard,” Ed Metcalf said.

The COVID-19 pandemic has posed another obstacle. The program’s main fundraising event, a popular annual tournament for adult golfers, has had to be scrubbed the past two years.

So the Metcalfs have closed down the program and closed out the books. At a farewell ceremony on Friday, May 14, they distributed checks for the program’s remaining bank balance – $22,262. The money will go to a scholarship fund, two youth golf programs, and a fitness program for kids on the Coquille Tribe’s Charleston-area reservation.

The Metcalfs’ project has been closely associated with the Coquille Tribe since the beginning. Ed Metcalf is the tribe’s retired chairman, and his wife formerly directed the tribe’s community center. The youth golf program evolved from tournaments previously sponsored by The Mill Casino-Hotel & RV Park, and the tribe has been a consistent sponsor.

The program’s annual fundraising tournament paid for golf clinics that welcomed as many as 125 kids each year. Multiple $1,000 college scholarships were awarded each year to tribal students and other southwestern Oregon youth. The program also sent promising young players to golf camps at Bandon Dunes Golf Resort, the former Coos Country Club (now Coos Golf Club), and throughout Oregon.

Though the program has ended, the Metcalfs and their team leave a community legacy, in the form of a generation of young golfers who benefited from their efforts.

“Our community and tribe has benefitted so much from the dedication, passion and hard work of both Ed and Jane,” said Tribal Chairman Brenda Meade. “The work they have done over these many years has supported so many people throughout our community. It is my hope that they know how important their work has been in the lives of so many of us, and for that I thank them!”

The Metcalfs want to hand out some thanks of their own. They’re grateful to:

  • Sponsors including the Coquille Indian Tribe, The Mill Casino-Hotel & RV Park, Nike, Aristocrat Technologies, IGT, AGS LLC, Bain Insurance, Bay Appliance, Bandon Dunes and the Y Marina
  • Twenty years of “fabulous volunteers,” including the program’s final crop of committee members: Miling Laygui, Terry Springer, Terri Porcaro, Mark Hubbard, Lonnie Simpson, Larry Simpson, Gregory Duerfeldt and Trudy Groth   
  • Bandon Dunes, Coos Golf Club and Kentuck Golf Course for hosting events
  • Bandon Dunes golf pro Scott Millhouser, who helped plan and organize clinics and camps at the resort

See media coverage of this story here: 

Coos Bay World Newspaper

College honors Chief Ivy

Southwestern honors Donald Ivy as 2021 Distinguished Alumnus

From Southwestern Oregon Community College, May 7, 2021

COOS BAY, OR — Southwestern Oregon Community College is pleased to announce the selection of Donald Ivy of Coos Bay as the 2021 Distinguished Alumnus.

Ivy is Chief of the Coquille Indian Tribe, a position he has held since 2014. In a nomination supported by educators, tribal leaders, former lawmakers, and Oregon’s governor, advocates for the award describe Ivy as representing “the best of what any educational institution hopes to achieve.” He encourages “individuals to think deeply, make an impact, share their knowledge and go on to encourage others to do the same.”

Ivy has made it his lifetime endeavor to work in growing knowledge, understanding history and engaging youth. The state of Oregon honored him with its Heritage Excellence Award in 2013. The following year, the University of Oregon appointed Ivy as its first-ever Tribal Elder in Residence.

“This honor is a reminder of the great privilege I have to know the people I know. I am thankful for the graces and goodwill of other people more accomplished than me who have allowed me into their space,” Ivy said.

Ivy has published articles on history and archaeology. He is a senior fellow of the American Leadership Forum. While heading the Coquille Tribe’s cultural program, he oversaw creation of the Kilkich Youth Corps, which provides workplace skills, mentoring and summer employment to tribal teens.

“Don Ivy came to our college in the mid-1990s to learn about the land, history and philosophy. He has used that knowledge to become in many ways a teacher for us all. He is a genuine leader who brings people together with shared vision for self-improvement and making our state better,” said Southwestern President Patty Scott.

Ivy served for several years on the college’s Foundation, advocating for the need to support scholarships and invest in quality facilities and training for residents of the south Oregon coast region. Under his leadership, the Coquille Indian Tribe was the college’s first vocal supporter and partner in building the college’s new Health & Science Technology center. The building will open in fall 2021, providing modern labs for training new generations of scientists, engineers and health care professionals.

“When I talk to somebody who’s a SWOCC student, I talk to them about the technology building. I see the excitement in our nursing students and others, and that building how important it is to them,” Ivy said. “I’m hoping the doors swing open in the fall and we fill it with students, and know we have accomplished a great thing.”

The Southwestern Foundation typically honors Distinguished Alumni in a celebration in coordination with graduation. This year, the college is postponing a Distinguished Alumni celebration until tentatively fall 2021.

“The whole COVID thing has challenged us with asking, ‘What are those things that are the most deeply rooted, the big important things that really, really matter,” Ivy said. “Celebration of community is hugely important. It reminds us to be together.”

This is the 30th year Southwestern has honored alumni who have demonstrated significant contributions to their professions, communities, or academia. To learn more about the college, go to

New CEO at The Mill

Margaret Simpson, right, will succeed Terri Porcaro as chief executive officer of the Coquille Economic Development Corp., parent company of The Mill Casino-Hotel & RV Park. (Photo by Alison Felton, Life’s Milestones LLC)

Tribal member Simpson will lead casino

NORTH BEND, Ore. – The Coquille Indian Tribe has appointed Margaret Simpson as the first female tribal member to become chief executive officer of The Mill Casino-Hotel & RV Park. 

Simpson began her career at The Mill in 2000 and has worked through roles in food and beverage, players club, marketing and hotel operations. She has served as the assistant general manager and currently holds the general manager position.

She proudly oversaw creation of a tribal member development program, and she was integral in the property’s response to one of its most challenging years, when it closed for three months and restructured due to the coronavirus pandemic.

She accomplished all of this while graduating from college and earning a master’s degree in hospitality from the University of Nevada-Las Vegas, America’s top-ranked hospitality and gaming program.

“It is something to celebrate in Indian Country when you see tribal members work their way up,” said tribal Chairman Brenda Meade.

Simpson’s role as CEO puts her in an elite group of young Native Americans who are challenging the dominance of non-Indians in the gaming industry.

“Strong Native people becoming gaming experts is an essential way to advance tribal gaming within the industry,” Simpson said.

Simpson earned enthusiastic backing from the Coquille Tribal Council as well as the board of The Mill’s parent company, the Coquille Economic Development Corp. Board member Eric Smileuske, a longtime gaming industry executive in New York, Washington, Oregon and Arizona and currently an industry consultant, described Simpson as a rare asset for a tribe.

“The opportunities are few and far between to hire a member of their own tribe to be their CEO,” he said.

Smileuske said the board told Simpson, “We didn’t give you this job – you earned it.” He said Simpson offers all the qualifications the tribe could have found in a nationwide talent search.

“I don’t think we compromised by promoting Margaret,” he said. “She is very qualified, she is unassuming, she is capable of leading, she has great gut instincts.”

Simpson will replace her mentor, Terri Porcaro, as CEO. Porcaro, who plans to retire Dec. 31, said she has never met anyone as focused and dedicated as Simpson.

 “She just amazes me every day,” she said. “She cares a lot about her tribe. She wants to see the tribe grow, and she wants to be part of it.”

Simpson said she was “humbled and inspired” by the support she received from the Tribal Council and the CEDCO board. She praised Porcaro, The Mill’s executive team, and CEDCO’s “exceptionally talented” board.

 “Operating the business that provides vital economic resources for my tribe is a huge responsibility that I take very seriously,” she said. “My motivation and desire to honor my ancestors and contribute to a brighter future for the next generations will continue to be the cornerstone of my work.”

J&J Vaccine Pause

Why we’ve suspended use of Johnson & Johnson vaccine

April 13, 2021

This morning, out of an abundance of caution, the Centers for Disease Control and the Food and Drug Administration have recommended a pause to the distribution of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine following six cases of rare and severe blood clots reported after receiving the vaccine. This recommendation is to halt distribution while the CDC, FDA, and other agencies work together to fully understand these events and get the appropriate vaccine education out to vaccine providers and recipients. Following this recommendation, the Coquille Indian Tribe has halted its use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, including the scheduled vaccine clinic on Friday, April 16. 

Out of the more than 6.8 million doses of Johnson & Johnson vaccine that have been distributed, there have been six reported U.S. cases of a rare and severe type of blood clot. In these cases, a type of blood clot called cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (CVST) was seen in combination with low levels of blood platelets (thrombocytopenia). CVST occurs when a blood clot forms in the brain’s venous sinuses. This prevents blood from draining out of the brain. As a result, blood cells may break and leak blood into the brain tissues, forming a hemorrhage. 

All six cases of adverse reactions following receipt of vaccine have occurred among women between the ages of 18 and 48, and symptoms occurred 6 to 13 days after vaccination. As treatment of this specific type of blood clot is different from the treatment that might typically be administered it is important that the health care system is ready to appropriately diagnose and treat these specific reactions. Usually, an anticoagulant drug called heparin is used to treat blood clots. In this setting, administration of heparin may be dangerous, and alternative treatments need to be given.

While these adverse events are extremely rare, only affecting 0.0000923% of the population who has received the vaccine, the safety of our community is our top priority, and we take all reports of health problems following COVID-19 vaccination very seriously. People who develop severe headache, abdominal pain, leg pain, or shortness of breath within three weeks after receiving the Johnson & Johnson vaccination should contact their health-care provider immediately. These symptoms are different from the mild flu-like symptoms that have been experienced by many who have received any one of the available COVID-19 vaccines.

Again, while these events are extremely rare, the health and safety of tribal members and our patients is our main concern. We are working to learn more about the vaccine and the overall risks and benefits associated with it. We will share with you what we know as we know it, and do our best to ensure that you have all of the education and tools needed to protect your health.


Marks, P. M.D., PhD. (2021). Joint CDC and FDA Statement on Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 Vaccine

Joint Media Call: FDA & CDC to Discuss Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine – 4/13/2021

Johns Hopkins Medicine

Community vaccine events

Tribe Offers Vaccines for Seniors and Teens

 Wednesday, March 17, 2021

 The Coquille Indian Tribe will offer COVID-19 vaccinations for local senior citizens and teens in two special events this week at The Mill Casino-Hotel.

Coos County residents age 65 and older are eligible for vaccinations on Friday, March 19, or Sunday, March 21. Coos County youth age 16-17 are eligible for the Sunday event.

“We’ve been working hard to vaccinate our tribal families, and we’re delighted that we can reach out to the broader community,” said Coquille Tribal Chairman Brenda Meade.

The Sunday event will use the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. Unlike the Moderna vaccine, the Pfizer vaccine can be given to anyone age 16 or older. So this event will target two groups: senior citizens age 65 and up, and teens age 16 and 17.

Meade said the Coquille Tribe is grateful for the opportunity to help protect vulnerable senior citizens as well as teens.

 “With kids going back to school and sports, getting them vaccinated will help protect their teachers and coaches and the whole community,” she said.

She noted that sharing this resource with the tribe’s neighbors reflects the traditional culture of Pacific Coast tribes.

“Our potlatch tradition is all about assisting those around us whenever we have the chance,” she said. “We’re so happy that we are in a position to do this.”

Teens and senior citizens can sign up by going to the tribe’s website, Once there, click on the large white box labeled, “COVID-19 Vaccines.”

Both vaccines require a second dose. The tribe will automatically schedule the Pfizer boosters three weeks after the first appointment and the Moderna boosters four weeks after the first appointment.

The Pfizer vaccine is a one-time supply, made possible by a partnership of the Coquille Tribe, the Oregon Health Authority, the Indian Health Service and the Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians. The OHA and IHS collaborated to provide the vaccine supply, which the two tribes are splitting.

The Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw Indians will help staff Sunday’s event.

Please note: The opportunity to sign up for appointments will end at 4 p.m. the day before each event. The supply of vaccine is limited, and shots at both events are available by appointment only.

For more information, please visit the vaccination page on


Eugene-area Indigenous people soon will have a Coquille Indian Tribe medical clinic

The Eugene Register Guard

An estimated 6,000 Native American and Alaskan Natives in Lane County don’t have a culturally specific medical clinic. The Coquille Indian Tribe is set on changing that.

Read more



OSA member vaccines

Live outside our service area?

If you are a Coquille Tribal member but unable to travel to a scheduled CIT clinic, there may be options closer to you. The Indian Health Service has a website to help you locate an IHS office or another tribal facility in your area. Tribal health-care facilities will likely offer the vaccine to Native patients sooner than the general public

Our staff may be able to help as well. For questions or assistance with navigating the IHS website, email us at