Pyle, who has been Chief of the Choctaw Nation since 1997, is among 50 Oklahomans over the age of 50 that were selected to be honored out of more than 200 nominations made by the general public.
“Chief Pyle is a man of vision and integrity who cares deeply about people,” said AARP Oklahoma State Director Nancy Coffer. “AARP is pleased to honor him as an example of the indomitable spirit that makes Oklahoma great.”
Other honorees include former Governor George Nigh, entertainer Roy Clark, a peace corps volunteer, two other American Indian Chiefs and a nun who operates a food pantry for the homeless.
Following the presentation, Chief Pyle signed a Divided We Fail Pledge affirming his support for the nationwide initiative to break federal gridlock and provide solutions for health care and long-term financial security for all Americans.
Divided We Fail is a bi-partisan effort between AARP, the National Federation of Independent Businesses, the Business Roundtable and the Service Employees International Union.
To date, more than 11,000 Oklahomans, including Governor Brad Henry, Lt. Governor Jari Askins, Congressman Dan Boren, Attorney General Drew Edmondson and Cherokee Chief Chad Smith have signed a Divided We Fail pledge. For more information on Divided We Fail or to sign a pledge online, visit www.dividedwefail.org.