Cory M. Blankenship, a member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, has served his tribe and community for over a decade through various positions within the Treasury Division – Office of Budget & Finance. Most recently, Cory served as the tribe’s Secretary of the Treasury, overseeing daily financial operations, tribal investments, and tribal economic diversification efforts. He also served on various boards and committees, including Tribal Planning Board, Balsam West FiberNet, and the EBCI Investment Committee. Cory serves as a board member of EBCI Holdings, LLC, an economic diversification entity of the tribe, where he serves as the chair of the Finance and Strategy Committee.
In addition to his roles with the tribal government, Cory also serves on various boards of directors for local non-profit organizations providing for his tribal community and surrounding areas. This service includes the Cherokee Historical Association, the Museum of the Cherokee Indian, and the Madison Hornbuckle Children’s Cancer Foundation. He is also a past president of the Cherokee Boys Club.
Cory is a third-generation alumnus of North Carolina State University, where he graduated in 2006 with a bachelor’s degree in political science. At NC State, he was the recipient of the Park Scholarship and volunteers in the application review and selection process annually. Cory also earned a master’s of public affairs degree from Western Carolina University in 2011 and a master’s of jurisprudence in federal Indian law from the University of Tulsa College of Law in 2013.
Cory and his wife, Jade, reside in the Big Cove Community of the Qualla Boundary (Cherokee Indian Reservation) with their five sons; Elias, Kellin, Kai, Obie, and Baker.