Hometown: Community Achievers

Alaskans are amazing! They win awards for their work and their volunteer efforts in just about every arena imaginable, all while raising families and making their towns and their state a better place to live. So let us know about your awards and accomplishments! And remember to post a photo so we can see your proud smile.

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Recent Community photos

Location: Anchorage, 2010 
Eagle Scouts Add 9 to Ranks 
TROOP 26: More than 1,700 volunteer hours logged for Eagle Scout projects. 
Published: Fe ...

Location: Anchorage, 2010 Eagle Scouts Add 9 to Ranks TROOP 26: More than 1,700 volunteer hours logged for Eagle Scout projects. Published: Fe ...

Location: The flats out of Kodiak, 04/05/10 
Captures the differnce

Location: The flats out of Kodiak, 04/05/10 Captures the differnce

Location: Jr. Iditarod trail, 02/28/10 
Congratulations to Guillermo Anton Fernandez, World Heritage exchange student from Spain, for winning 5th ...

Location: Jr. Iditarod trail, 02/28/10 Congratulations to Guillermo Anton Fernandez, World Heritage exchange student from Spain, for winning 5th ...

Location: Dimond Walmart Store Parking Lot - Anchorage, AK, 03/25/10 
A recent donation from the Walmart Foundation helped purchase a new vehicle ...

Location: Dimond Walmart Store Parking Lot - Anchorage, AK, 03/25/10 A recent donation from the Walmart Foundation helped purchase a new vehicle ...

Location: SAHS, 11/20/09 
Alex Krolick has been awarded an all-expense- paid summer study trip to the Federal Republic of Germany.  Alex was one  ...

Location: SAHS, 11/20/09 Alex Krolick has been awarded an all-expense- paid summer study trip to the Federal Republic of Germany. Alex was one ...

Location: Heliexpo, Houston, TX, February, 2010 
Alaskan cited for early helicopter pioneering
Longtime Anchorage resident and former Era Helicop ...

Location: Heliexpo, Houston, TX, February, 2010 Alaskan cited for early helicopter pioneering Longtime Anchorage resident and former Era Helicop ...

Location: Manas AB, Kyrgyzstan, 02/26/10 
After arriving to Manas AB, Kyrgyzstan, I was presented the OIF medal for our work in 4.5 months in Iraq.

Location: Manas AB, Kyrgyzstan, 02/26/10 After arriving to Manas AB, Kyrgyzstan, I was presented the OIF medal for our work in 4.5 months in Iraq.

Location: Anchorage, MArch, 1960 
Camp Fire's 100th Birthday!
Camp Fire is celebrating its Centennial Birthday on March 17th and will be holding  ...

Location: Anchorage, MArch, 1960 Camp Fire's 100th Birthday! Camp Fire is celebrating its Centennial Birthday on March 17th and will be holding ...

Location: Home, 02/28/10 
Daelin Richard 5 months old.

Location: Home, 02/28/10 Daelin Richard 5 months old.

Location: McGinleys Pub St. Baldrick's  Event, 03/06/10 
Saturday several Anchorage & Eagle River Hair Salons helped out the St. Baldrick's Found ...

Location: McGinleys Pub St. Baldrick's Event, 03/06/10 Saturday several Anchorage & Eagle River Hair Salons helped out the St. Baldrick's Found ...

Location: Caption: Glenn Cravez with the Alaska Council's CEO, Barb Dubovich, and  President, Sara Pate., 11/07/09 
Glenn Cravez of Anchorage to  ...

Location: Caption: Glenn Cravez with the Alaska Council's CEO, Barb Dubovich, and President, Sara Pate., 11/07/09 Glenn Cravez of Anchorage to ...

Location: anchorage ballet, 12/10/10 
Thank you to the Rasmuson Foundation for its generous support to the Anchorage Ballet's Lobby Improvement p ...

Location: anchorage ballet, 12/10/10 Thank you to the Rasmuson Foundation for its generous support to the Anchorage Ballet's Lobby Improvement p ...

Location: Boys and Girls Home of Alaska, 01/20/10 
Boys and Girls of Alaska Welcomes New Director of Nursing!

Boys and Girls Home of Alaska prou ...

Location: Boys and Girls Home of Alaska, 01/20/10 Boys and Girls of Alaska Welcomes New Director of Nursing! Boys and Girls Home of Alaska prou ...

Location: Anchorage, 09/19/2009 

Bryce J. Monaco achieved Eagle Scout rank in August 2009. For his Eagle Scout project he designed and supervise ...

Location: Anchorage, 09/19/2009 Bryce J. Monaco achieved Eagle Scout rank in August 2009. For his Eagle Scout project he designed and supervise ...

Location: Anchorage, 09/19/2009

Location: Anchorage, 09/19/2009

  157     May 4, 2010 - 8:21pm | mrsak

New Mrs. Alaska and Mrs. Anchorage are crowned!

Congratulations to Anna Foerster, winner of the title Mrs. Anchorage 2010, and Lyndsay Wheeles, winner of the title Mrs. Alaska United States 2010. Both of these fantastic representatives will carry their titles for one year, making appearances throughout the city of Anchorage and state of Alaska representing various non-profit organizations, political associations, and church groups.

For more information, visit www.MrsAK.com

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  156     April 30, 2010 - 12:39pm | kmacknicki

ALPAR Presents Recycling & Litter Prevention Awards

On Thursday, April 29, ALPAR (Alaskans for Litter Prevention and Recycling) recognized outstanding achievements in recycling and litter prevention in Alaska in 2009 at their annual awards banquet held at the historic Alaska Railroad Freight Shed. This year’s theme was “Recycle, Reuse, Renovate!” and will celebrate the greening of the construction industry in Alaska.

ALPAR has presented these awards since its inception in 1983.

Fort Richardson received the Outstanding Litter Program Award for its exemplary efforts during the Anchorage Chamber Citywide Clean up last year and throughout the summer with over 100 volunteers providing over 4,000 hours of work to clean up Anchorage.

Central Recycling Services, an Alaska based construction and demolition debris recycler, was recognized as the Outstanding Business Recycler for their substantial capital investment in their facility which is expanding the opportunity for the construction industry to divert waste and recycle.

Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore was named Outstanding Supporter for their success in reusing and recycling over 5 million pounds of construction products and materials in their 7 years serving Anchorage. The resulting revenues last year enabled them to build an entire house.

The News Group was recognized as the Outstanding Contributor of the year for their donation of office space to ALPAR and their long-standing efforts in magazine recycling.

Thermo-Kool of Alaska received the ALPAR Board of Directors Award for their 33-year commitment to manufacturing construction materials here in state, primarily cellulose insulation and hydro seeding mulch using recycled materials such as newsprint and other paper.

The Municipality of Anchorage received the Outstanding Recycling Community award for their new outreach efforts, support for the Anchorage School District’s recycling program and expansion of curbside recycling.

The Boys and Girls Clubs of Anchorage and Eagle River received the award for Outstanding Youth Litter Patrol for successfully operating 5 patrols that not only picked up 585 bags of trash last summer, but also taught youth patrollers work skills through their Job Ready and Career Launch programs.

Chugiak High School’s Taking Environmental Action Club received top honors for Outstanding Anchorage School Recycling Program. Student leader Molissa Udevitz and club members took the lead to implement Chugiak High’s successful mixed paper recycling, plastic and can recycling program.

The Alaska Branch of the Cascadia Region Green Building Council will be recognized with the Leadership in Education Award for their exemplary efforts to change the mindset about green construction in Alaska.

Riley Kosinski, the Outreach Coordinator with Total Reclaim, the Anchorage-based electronics recycler, was recognized for Outstanding Service for his work to raise awareness about electronics recycling and managing other wastes that are hazardous to the environment.

This year, ALPAR most prestigious award, called the Joe Gulley President's Award for Outstanding Leadership, is recognizing Rodney Gaskins, Executive Director of the Fairbanks Rescue Mission for his exemplary community service, leadership and vision that resulted in the start up of a new recycling center for Fairbanks that is operated in large part by the homeless clients that are served by the Mission. He accomplished this from inception of the idea to realty in just 10 months.

Local artist Rebecca Lyon created the award plaques using recycled materials and found objects.

ALPAR is a non-profit organization dedicated to increasing economically viable recycling and eliminating litter in Alaska. ALPAR with help from BP distributes free, bright yellow clean up bags to 220 Alaskan communities and organizations each summer, funds Youth Litter Patrols statewide. Through the generous support from the shipping companies including Horizon Lines, Totem Ocean Trailer Express, Lynden and Northland Services, ALPAR helps move recyclables from South Central Alaska to market. The support of our member companies and other dedicated businesses throughout Alaska make ALPAR programs and services possible.


2009 Joe Gulley President's Award
For Outstanding Service
Rodney Gaskins - Fairbanks Rescue Mission

2009 Board of Directors' Award
For Outstanding Service
Thermo-Kool of Alaska

2009 Contributor of the Year
The News Group

2009 Outstanding Litter Program
Fort Richardson

2009 Outstanding Recycling Community
Municipality of Anchorage

2009 Outstanding Supporter
Habitat for Humanity ReStore

2009 Outstanding Business Recycler
Central Recycling Services

2009 Outstanding Youth Litter Patrol
Boys & Girls Clubs – Anchorage and Eagle River

2009 Leadership in Education
Cascadia Region Green Building Council – Alaska Branch

2009 Outstanding Anchorage School Recycling Program
Chugiak High School – Taking Environmental Action Club

2009 Outstanding Service
Riley Kosinski – Total Reclaim

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  155     April 14, 2010 - 2:53pm | akjesster8

Alaska Kidney Foundation gives another $30,000 to UAA

The Alaska Kidney Foundation will give $30,000 to the University of Alaska Anchorage in 2010 for scholarship support. Since 2002, the Foundation has provided $420,000 in scholarship money to the University, which has supported 181 students pursuing nursing degrees. The scholarship program benefits both students-in-need and Alaska citizens who require qualified nurses in their local communities.

Established in 1973, the Alaska Kidney Foundation works to prevent kidney disease, increase detection of early kidney disease, empower kidney patients through education, improve kidney patient health care, enhance the quality of life for kidney patients, increase organ donation and support kidney disease research.

The Foundation believes that providing good basic health care is key to preventing kidney-related diseases. Suzanne Goodrich, executive director of the Alaska Kidney Foundation, explains that one of the Foundation’s goals is to prevent kidney disease through education.

The Alaska Kidney Foundation Scholarship helps prepare new nurses to provide safe and effective care to individuals experiencing chronic kidney disease in Alaska. Goodrich said, “Supporting nursing students is a part of the Foundation’s mission to raise awareness of kidney disease and provide support for Alaskans who have or are at risk of kidney disease.”

In 2002, the UAA School of Nursing established the goal of doubling the number of basic nursing graduates by 2006. To help meet this goal, the Alaska Kidney Foundation gave its first gift of $20,000 in 2002 to support scholarships at UAA.

“The UAA School of Nursing is very grateful to the Alaska Kidney Foundation for its continued support of our students,” said Jean Ballantyne, director of UAA’s School of Nursing. “The vast majority of Alaska Kidney Foundation Scholarship recipients have graduated and remained in Alaska to augment the nursing workforce and to improve the care of patients experiencing impaired kidney function.”

For more information on the Alaska Kidney Foundation Scholarship and a list of recipients, visit www.uaa.alaska.edu/scholarships/kidney.cfm.

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  154     February 3, 2010 - 11:29am | kmacknicki

Connolly recognized with Women's Opportunity Award

Soroptimist International of Cook Inlet, a volunteer organization for business and professional women, will present a $1,000 Women’s Opportunity Award to help an Anchorage woman student improve her economic situation through additional education and training. The awards ceremony will be held at 12 noon on March 2 at the Anchorage Westmark Hotel. The Soroptimist of Cook Inlet holds its awards ceremony each year nearest to International Women’s Day—the day that celebrates women’s contributions to society.

Anastasia Connolly, 26, will use the cash award to complete her AAS degree in nursing from the University of Alaska Anchorage. Once she completes her studies, Connolly, a domestic abuse survivor, plans to bridge her RN to a BSN and then go even further and master in Public Health.

The Women’s Opportunity Awards program is Soroptimist International of the Americas’ major service project. Soroptimist International of Cook Inlet is one of 1,500 clubs that make up Soroptimist International of the Americas, an organization dedicated to improving the lives of women and girls. The Women’s Opportunity Awards program provides women who serve as the primary wage earners for their families with the financial resources to offset costs associated with their efforts to attain higher education or additional skills and training and can be used for tuition, books, childcare or any other education-related expense. This program was created in 1972 to help women improve their ability to provide for their families. Each year, more than $1 million is provided in cash grants to women in need. Since the program’s inception in 1972, approximately $15 million in Women’s Opportunity Awards has been disbursed to about 25,000 women throughout the countries served by Soroptimist International of the America’s.

Connolly will now advance to the Soroptimist Western Region level, where one recipient will receive $5,000. The program culminates with three finalist $10,000 awards.

The Cook Inlet Soroptimists chose Connolly because of her inspiring story, her 3.9 grade-point­-average in college and the excellent recommendations she received. Connolly has been raising her son and helping support her three younger brothers on the money she earns working two jobs as a nursing assistant at the hospital and an internal medical practice.

For more information about how Soroptimist improves the lives of women and girls, call Holly Zachman-Parsons at (907) 277-1616.

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  153     December 16, 2009 - 1:07pm | kmacknicki

Donna Stephens honored through "Possibilities in Action" program

Local members of the National Association of School Psychologists is pleased to announce that Donna Stephens, Executive Director of Hospice of Anchorage has been honored through the national “Possibilities in Action” Partner Program. Sponsored by the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP), the “Possibilities in Action” Program seeks to emphasize supporting the needs of the whole child in furthering positive school outcomes and to honor individual members of the community who exemplify identification and promotion of the possibilities within each student.

Meeting the needs of the whole child is essential to helping students feel connected, supported, and ready to learn, factors critical to school success. School psychologists work to lower barriers to learning and promote school success through a variety of prevention, academic and behavior intervention, and wellness and mental health services. They are identifying and honoring teachers, administrators, other educators, and parents who contribute in an extraordinary way to this effort in their daily work and interactions with students.

Recipients are selected based on suggested guidelines from NASP that highlight remarkable personal or professional dedication to improving outcomes for students, outstanding professional functioning and effectiveness, commitment to effective collaboration with school psychologists and other student services staff, and long-term dedication to advocacy on behalf of individual students. In addition to receiving a certificate from NASP, “Possibilities in Action” award recipients have been added to the national list of 2009 “Possibilities in Action Partners ” on the NASP website at www.nasponline.org/communications/spawareness/index.aspx .

“Adults make many important contributions to the development of children. Seeing and advancing the possibilities within students, even in the face of difficulties, is critical to helping them achieve their best in school, at home, and in life,” says NASP President Patti Harrison. “Some people go above and beyond, making extraordinary efforts to promote students’ competencies, create opportunities for children to meet their goals, and expand schools’ capacity to foster success. We want to recognize these adults who are partners for ‘Possibilities in Action’ and have been admirable influences on the lives of children.” Factors that contribute to school success include ensuring that students are physically and mentally healthy, providing social, emotional and behavioral support, maintaining high expectations and offering encouragement, providing quality instruction that meets students’ individual learning needs, and emphasizing and recognizing students for their strengths.

Donna recognized a need to address the real and devastating grief experienced by our teens and youth following personal loss. She created a support network for children and youth who are grieving. She exemplifies someone who goes to extraordinary personal and professional efforts to improve outcomes for students in the community. She collaborates with the Anchorage School District and other professionals in the community to support children and youth at a vulnerable time in their lives.

Helping children to feel safe, valued and connected to community goes a long way to support children in achieving their best in daily life. Donna also facilitates professional development for members of our community by training them in awareness of children’s issues surrounding grief and how children express that grief.

NASP represents more than 25,500 school psychologists who work in schools and other education and health settings.

For further information contact Joan Bohmann (jcb200850@yahoo.com) or visit www.nasponline.org. Joan is the NASP Chair of the Assistance to States Committee and a board member of the National School Psychologist Certification System Board.

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  152     October 22, 2009 - 2:55pm | kmacknicki

Seven Native Writers to Split $70,000 & Showcase Native Innovati

Native Insight Competition Winners’ Ideas Going to DC

ANCHORAGE, ALASKA - This morning, Alaska Federation of Natives (AFN) President Julie Kitka announced the names of seven Native Insight Competition winners, who will receive $10,000 each. Their ideas will be published in Native journals and magazines across the United States, including Alaska Newspapers, Indian Affairs, Native American Times, Native Sun and Native Legacy Magazine.

The Native Insight Winners’, Finalists’ and Semi-Finalists’ ideas will also be shared with members of the Obama Administration. “The Native community has a tremendous amount of knowledge and insight to share. We were overwhelmed by the quality and diversity of the essays submitted, and we are looking forward to helping take these great ideas to the public and the Administration,” said AFN President Julie Kitka.

Nearly 300 Native thinkers from across the nation submitted "Native Insight" essays about the economy and prospects for recovery. Women submitted 58 percent of the 280 eligible Native Insight entries, and men submitted 40 percent. Alaska Natives made up 32 percent of the applicant pool, with American Indians submitting 48 percent of the entries, and Native Hawaiians 16 percent.

The competition was open to Alaska Natives, Native Hawaiians and American Indians of all ages. The 500-1,600 word essays were due September 15, 2009. Essays addressed one or more of three writing prompts focused on how the Native community can support economic renewal, what it will take for the American economy to rebound and what the American leadership can do to jumpstart recovery. Visit www.nativeinsight.org to read the winning essays and learn more about this exciting competition.

AFN partnered with the National Congress of American Indians, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs and the Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement to reach Native communities across the nation.

Harold Frank Jr, "Renewing Our Future"
Central Council Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribe of Alaska
Ellensburg, Wash.

Methanie Ongtooguk, "America and the Whale: Strengthened Economy through Smaller Community"
Fairbanks, Alaska

Charles W. Ralston, "Alaska Native Corporations Can Provide International Benefits Through Marketing Carbon Offset"
Nulato Tribal Council (Nulato, AK) and Doyon Ltd. (Fairbanks,AK)
Arcata, Calif.

Lurline Wailana McGregor, "Economic Recovery - Hawaiian Style"
Native Hawaiian
Honolulu, Hawaii

Melissa Tantaquidgeon Zobel, "The Accomac Business Model"
The Mohegan Tribe of Indians of Connecticut
Old Mistic, Conn.

Samantha Johnson, "Native Americans & Small Business Ventures: Bright Hope for Economic Recovery"
Sault Sainte Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians
Phelps, Wis.

Jacquelyn Dyer, "Plan for a New Native American Century"
Arcata, Calif.

Erik Edwardson, Bradley J. Fluetsch, Larry (Llarion) Merculieff, Joan Kane, Kyan Olanna, Roberta John

Robert J. Flowers, Lee Stephen, Emestine Andrew, Yuri M. Bishop, Z.A. Aki, Poka Laenui, Lawrence SpottedBird, Stephanie Lucero, Joy Harjo, Barbara Giammarino, Wilda L.M. Asimont, Kahseuss Jackson, Dorothy Edwardsen, Deborah Plessinger, Jacquelyn Dyer, Amanda Blackgoat, Sherry Thompson, Simon S. Oskoloff, Rebecca Thrower, Anna M. Westdahl, Rebecca Riley, Laurie A. Stone, Thomas Kawika St. Germain, Helene Kuaana, Jihan Rene Gearonr.

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  151     October 5, 2009 - 1:17pm | kmacknicki

Anchorage pediatrician attends White House Rose Garden event

On Monday, October 5, 2009, at 11 A.M. EST,
Anchorage-based pediatrician Monique Karaganis, MD, will attend a special event with
doctors in support of health care reform, hosted in the White House Rose Garden by
President Barack Obama.

“It’s a privilege to be asked to join colleagues from across America and to
represent Alaska in a demonstration of support for President Obama's plan for health
care reform,” said Karaganis. “Everything in my life experience and professional training
has taught me that health care should be available to everyone, and I’m eager to discuss
the issues further with the president.”

Board-certified Karaganis, 35, has been practicing medicine for 10 years, and in
May, she opened Polar Pediatrics at 411 West Northern Lights Boulevard in Anchorage.

“A major priority at Polar Pediatrics is spending time with my patients. It’s a
crucial topic related to the national debate because the costs associated with practicing
medicine are prohibiting many doctors from taking the time to get to know their patients,
and time is a cornerstone of quality care,” she said.

Karaganis earned a Bachelor of Science degree in biology from Creighton
University in 1996, her MD from the University of Illinois, Chicago, and she completed
her residency at Cook County Hospital in Chicago in 2003.

In addition to four months of work with the World Health Organization in Geneva,
Karaganis taught at both the University of Illinois and the University of Colorado as a
clinical pediatric instructor for both medical students and pediatric residents. She also
volunteered in Bolivia, bringing medical care to the poor.

The meeting with Obama is one Karaganis hopes will move the nation closer to
resolving what she calls “the greatest domestic challenge facing the U.S. It’s also the
greatest domestic opportunity for this administration and this congress,” she said.

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  150     September 25, 2009 - 12:04pm | jkoskela

Girl Scout Volunteers Honored

Sixteen Girl Scout volunteers were honored for their service to Girl Scouting on September 12, 2009 at the Begich Middle School in Anchorage.

Peggy Kugel of Anchorage was the recipient of the Thanks Badge II. Meera Kohler also of Anchorage, received the Thanks Badge. The Thanks Badge and the Thanks Badge II are the highest awards presented to adult volunteers in Girl Scouting. Both Ms. Kugel and Ms. Kohler have served on the Board of Directors of Girl Scouts Susitna Council and have been an integral part of the Council’s success.

The Appreciation Pin was presented to Jennifer Baldwin, Vicki Citro, Shiree Farmer and Jennifer Hately all of Anchorage; Ann Corbett of Eagle River; Diane Beauvais, Cheryl Hampton and Teresa Hettrick of Wasilla, and Michelle Wolfmeier of Palmer.

Ola & Paul Williams were named Couple of the Year. There was a three-way tie for the Spouse of the Year award. Russ Beauvais of Wasilla, James Corbett of Eagle River and Jim Shannon of South Anchorage.

The President’s Award which recognizes Girl Scout communities in the categories of membership, community events and girl retention were presented to the following communities: Eagle River, East Anchorage, Little Su, Palmer, Seward and Wasilla.

This was the final volunteer awards ceremony for Girl Scouts Susitna Council. On October 1, 2009, Susitna Council will merge with Tongass Alaska Girl Scout Council which currently serves southeast Alaska. The newly formed council will be called Girl Scouts of Alaska.

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  149     September 8, 2009 - 11:07am | akjesster8

New members join UAA Alumni Association Board of Directors

The University of Alaska Anchorage Alumni Association is excited to welcome five new members to its Board of Directors. The Alumni Association is growing quickly, with more than 40,000 UAA alumni, 80 percent of whom live in Alaska. The Association represents the needs and interests of UAA alumni while promoting and enhancing the University of Alaska Anchorage.

Ben Grenn, B.Ed. ’72
Ben Grenn is now semi-retired. He previously worked as Assistant Sports Information Director at UAA, and served earlier on UAAAA’s Board of Directors. He and his wife are both 40-plus year Anchorage residents, and have three grown children.

James Hemsath, M.S. ‘01
Jim Hemsath is the Deputy Director for Development at the Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority. Jim has 30 years of experience managing the development of large projects, predominately in the oil and gas fields. He has worked in the oil industry as a project manager and consultant with special expertise in the application of management systems, change management, technical integrity and quality management. Hemsath has additional experience as a faculty member of the Engineering and Science Management Department at the University of Alaska Anchorage; teaching classes in quality management, project and engineering management and operations research. He was a recipient of a NASA Faculty Fellowship in which he developed a dynamic simulation model to assist in staffing projections at Kennedy Space Center.

As a member of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Arctic Energy Office he managed research projects at the University of Alaska Fairbanks in the development of Arctic energy. As a Senior Fellow at the Institute of the North he developed and led an International Polar Year project on Arctic Energy, culminating in an international Arctic Energy Technology Conference in October 2007.

Hemsath has an undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Michigan, a master’s degree in industrial engineering from Cleveland State University and a master’s degree in engineering management from the University of Alaska Anchorage. Hemsath is a licensed Professional Engineer and a certified Project Management Professional.

Natalia Manfredi, B.A. ‘06
Natalia Manfredi is a 2006 graduate of UAA and holds a B.A. in anthropology, with a minor in communications. She is currently a full-time student in UAA’s Masters of Public Administration program, with an emphasis on pubic management. She anticipates graduating in May 2010. Manfredi is a lifelong Alaskan who has lived in Sitka, Kodiak and Anchorage. She’s currently an intern at the Alaska Center for Public Policy.

Scott Markle, B.B.A. ‘06
Scott Markle born and raised in Anchorage, AK. He graduated from East Anchorage High School in 2001, and completed and internship with Senator Ted Stevens in Washington, D.C. in 2001.

After earning his Bachelor of Business Administration in Economics and Marketing in 2006, Markle began his career at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, LLC. He’s currently working toward a Certified Financial Planner designation, and intends to return to UAA in 2011 to earn a master’s degree in either economics or public administration.

In his spare time, Markle enjoys long distance running with his two retrievers. He also enjoys snowmachining, four-wheeling and hiking.

Sara Randall Paul, B.B.A. ‘05
Paul, hailing from Connecticut, is a former scholarship member of the Seawolf Women’s Gymnastics Team and completed her undergraduate studies in 2005. Her relationship with the University continues in pursuit of a M.B.A., as she is approaching the last semester of her graduate studies. Sara is an Account Executive at the Nerland Agency, a local advertising agency, where she began working during summer of 2005.

Sara has also been active as a volunteer and on committee work for several organizations including the UAA Alumni Association, AWAIC, Covenant House, the American Marketing Association, and Special Olympics.

She is married to college sweetheart Russell Paul, and lives in Anchorage.

Officers for 2009-10 are Jeff Roe, President; Vanessa Roberts, Vice President; Skye McRoberts, Treasurer; and Lorali Carter, Secretary. Laurie Bruce, Trevor Fulton, Dr. Norman Wilder, and re-elected directors George Skladal and David Parks comprise the remaining board.

For more information about the UAA Alumni Association, visit www.uaaalumni.org, or call (907) 786-1941.

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  148     June 24, 2009 - 9:22am | akjesster8

Personnel changes in UAA's alumni relations office

The University of Alaska Anchorage Office of University Advancement is pleased to announce important changes within its alumni relations office. UAA’s alumni, now a group that is nearly 40,000 strong, is an extremely important constituency for the University.

In an effort to bring more focus to alumni relations overall and to appropriately integrate alumni relations into all that UAA does, Julia Martinez was appointed to the role of senior director of alumni relations and annual giving. In this post she will be responsible for strategic oversight of both the alumni relations and annual giving areas, helping to integrate our efforts in communicating, engaging and soliciting individuals (many of whom are alumni) into all University Advancement activity.

UAA University Advancement is also pleased to announce that Timea Webster, who has performed admirably in an interim post in alumni relations for the last year, will become the assistant alumni relations manager. Timea will be responsible for oversight and coordination of UAA Alumni Association activity, as well as the execution of other alumni relations plans.

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  147     May 9, 2009 - 7:29am | rocknron


Local Disc Jockey & Master-Of-Ceremonies Ron Stein, better known as D.J. ROCK-N-RON, celebrates his 25th anniversary of proud service to Alaskans.

He began his career in 1984, working at public radio station KSKA-FM 91, producing classical & jazz music, a weekly "adult contemporary" music show called "Northern Reflections", and was involved in fundraising efforts for the station.
During the 1980's, he worked at "The Whaler", a very popular nightclub located on Muldoon Rd, playing Top 40, Rock-N-Roll & Club music for the masses. He's also been the featured DJ in many Fur Rondy parade floats supporting Covenant House.

His mobile music service, Alastar Entertainment offers state-wide DJ & MC services for wedding receptions, anniversaries, holiday office parties, school dances, birthdays, non-profit groups & special events. Clients may choose from a wide variety of music styles spanning more than 80 years.
He can be reached at 333-2974, or by email at rocknron@alaska.com.

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  146     April 22, 2009 - 3:25pm | asclw52

ANSEP leader earns national award for education reform efforts

ANSEP leader earns national award for education reform efforts

Dr. Herb (Iļisaurri) Schroeder, founder and executive director of the UAA's Alaska Native Science & Engineering Program (ANSEP), has been selected to receive the National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering (NACME) 2009 Founder’s Award, also known as the Reginald H. Jones Award. The award will be presented to Dr. Schroeder at NACME’s 35th Anniversary Awards Dinner and Celebration in New York City on Sept. 29, 2009.

NACME, established in 1974, created the Founder’s Award to recognize individuals who showed exemplary commitment and service in support of NACME’s mission. The award comes with a $10,000 gift to be given to a non-profit of Dr. Schroeder’s choice.

The NACME Web site states that this year’s awards dinner theme is “Changing Lives, Changing America” to highlight “NACME’s dual role of changing lives through its involvement in K-12 and higher education, and its ability to change America through its leadership and policy advocacy to produce a graduating engineering class that looks like America.”

Dr. Schroeder started ANSEP in 1995 with one engineering student. ANSEP is a longitudinal program that works with students from the time they’re sophomores in high school all the way into graduate school. It’s designed to increase university recruitment and retention rates through hands-on high school outreach initiatives, rigorous summer bridging programs, focused academic learning communities, organized student cohorts, networks of peer and professional mentors, community-based learning, professional internships, undergraduate research projects and graduate school programs.

In 2001, Dr. Schroeder led the formation of the Pacific Alliance with the goal of replicating ANSEP at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, the University of Hawai’i Manoa and the University of Washington. The Alliance was recently expanded to include South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, University of Colorado at Boulder, University of Idaho and University of North Dakota. ANSEP and the Pacific Alliance are national models for recruitment and retention programs.

In addition to other university leaders from across the U.S., Dr. Schroeder will have the opportunity to address the NACME supporters who come to the awards dinner. This includes several dozen Fortune 500 company executives, as well as the President of the National Academy of Engineering, among others.

For more information about NACME, visit http://www.nacme.org/about/. For more information about ANSEP, visit http://ansep.uaa.alaska.edu.

For more information, contact
Jessica D. Hamlin, Office of University Advancement, at (907) 786-1288 or anjmh6@uaa.alaska.edu.

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  145     April 15, 2009 - 11:10am | ronnieb

Alaska Head Start Association Award winners

On February 10, 2009, the Alaska Head Start Association honored four staff and parents from Kids' Corps, Inc. at their annual banquet in Juneau. The honorees were: Bob Dale, "Bus Driver of the Year", Chris Trejos, "Father of the Year", Gary Leaming, for "Beating the Odds", and Nancy Schjenken, "Center Director of the Year". The four were recognized for their exceptional service on behalf of families and children enrolled in the Kids' Corps Head Start program.

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  144     April 15, 2009 - 9:26am | mhallum


The National Association of Court-Appointed Special Advocates for Children [CASA] has honored Anchorage Children’s Court Master William Hitchcock with its 2009 Judge of the Year Award. The award recognizes excellence in judicial service in cases involving abused and neglected children. Master Hitchcock has been a judicial officer with the Alaska Court System for over thirty years, and has presided over Anchorage children’s court since 1985. In 1987, he was instrumental in founding Alaska’s first CASA program, which provides trained volunteer advocates to work with abused and neglected children during court cases affecting their welfare. He has fostered expansion of the CASA program statewide and is active in a variety of other children’s justice and juvenile justice initiatives. Master Hitchcock has received many awards over the years for his dedication to the administration of justice in children’s cases, including the 2005 Commissioner’s Award for Alaska from the federal Administration on Children, Youth and Families, and the 2002 Community Outreach Award from the Alaska Supreme Court. Master Hitchcock is the first Alaskan to receive the National CASA Judge of the Year award, which will be presented on April 26, 2009, during the 28th Annual National CASA Conference in Denver. In recognition of the award, the Anchorage CASA program will pay special tribute to Master Hitchcock during its upcoming volunteer reunion on Wednesday, April 22, between 7:00 PM-8:30 PM at the BP Energy Center. ###

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  143     April 15, 2009 - 8:40am | bwoodin

Dee Hilbert 2008 ACRF Mat-Su Volunteer of the Year

Dee Hilbert received the Alaska Center for Resource Families 2008 Mat-Su Volunteer of the Year award during the award ceremony at the 6th annual Light of Hope event April 5th at Wasilla High. This award was in recognition of the remarkable job she did gathering donated holiday gifts from local individuals, businesses and agencies for children in foster care. For more information contact Betsy Woodin at ACRF 376-4678

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  142     April 3, 2009 - 2:26pm | dahale


ANCHORAGE, AK – Alaska Pacific University (APU) is pleased to announce that graduate Kelly Melillo’s Master’s thesis on interspecies interactions between bottlenose and spotted dolphins in Bimini, Bahamas has been accepted for publication in “Aquatic Mammals,” an internationally recognized, peer reviewed journal.

Melillo received her Master’s of Science in Environmental Science from APU in December 2007. Her research in Bimini and subsequent thesis set the stage for the development of a new academic course in Coastal Ecosystems now offered at the university.

The article, coauthored by Dr. Kathleen Dudzinski and APU Professor Dr. Leslie Cornick and entitled Interactions between Atlantic spotted (Stenella frontalis) and bottlenose (Tursiops truncatus) dolphins off Bimini, The Bahamas 2003 – 2007 is planned to appear in the July edition of “Aquatic Mammals.” For more information, contact Dr. Cornick at lcornick@alaskapacific.edu.

Founded in 1959, Alaska Pacific University is a private, independent university that promotes the fullest development of its students through student-centered, experiential learning in liberal arts and professional programs. To find out more, visit www.alaskapacific.edu.

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  141     March 25, 2009 - 2:07pm | kalynsc

Big Brothers Big Sisters - Bowl for Kids' Sake

Bowl for Kids’ Sake event raises over $35,000 for Big Brothers Big Sisters in Anchorage

ANCHORAGE, Alaska – Big Brothers Big Sisters’ annual Bowl for Kids’ Sake event raised over $35,000 during the event on Saturday, March 21st. This fundraiser is the largest of the year for Big Brothers Big Sisters nationwide, and is expected to generate more than $250,000 for the programs in Alaska alone.

More than 250 people on over 50 teams participated in Saturday’s event at Jewel Lake Bowl. Teams worked to raise $1,000 in pledges, and prizes were given away to teams that raised the most money before the event. The amount of $1,000 is set as the goal for each team, as it is roughly the cost of a Big/Little match between a volunteer and child.

Online pledges will be accepted until July 1st – at which point prizes such as plane tickets and a cruise will be awarded to the teams that raised the most throughout the state. “The funds raised at this event each year ensure that we can continue to provide mentorship to children in the Anchorage community, without this event we would not be able to reach as many children and volunteers” said Big Brothers Big Sisters of Anchorage CEO Peggy Owens.

Corporate and donation sponsors included:
-Alaska Airlines
-Wells Fargo
-Alaska Cruise Association
-Conoco Phillips
-First National Bank of Alaska
-Alyeska Pipeline Service Company
-Arbor Capital Management Inc
-Neeser Construction
-Beacon Occupational Health and Safety Services
-Alaska Wild
-Anchorage Sand and Gravel
-Anchorage Museum at Rasmuson Center
-Kaladi Brothers
-Peppercini’s Deli House
-Alaska Zoo
-Boston’s Pizza
-Allure Day Spa and Hair Design
-Aurora Limousine
-Fred Meyer
-Burger King
-Phillips Cruises and Tours
-Moose’s Tooth
-Arctic Roadrunner
-Dimond Parking

Children who are mentored through BBBS are known to do better in school have more positive relationships with peers and family, and grow up to be positively involved in their communities. Great things can happen when the children in our community feel supported and encouraged.

To pledge the event, please visit www.bfksalaska.kintera.org, or call Liz Army at 263-2064 for more information.

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  140     February 23, 2009 - 2:40pm | SaraUrvina


Juneau, Ak, February 18, 2009 Megan Gunyah, a nine year member of the Metlakatla Boys & Girls Club, has been named the Youth of the Year for the state of Alaska by Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA). In addition to winning this prestigious title, Gunyah will also receive one year’s tuition from the University of Alaska Anchorage, a $1000 scholarship from the Boys and Girls Club of Southcentral Alaska, and a $1,000 scholarship from the Reader’s Digest Foundation. She is among hundreds of Youth of the Year winners across the country recognized by Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) for her sound character, leadership skills and willingness to give back to the community.
Being named Youth of the Year is the highest honor a Boys & Girls Club member can receive. The title recognizes outstanding contributions to a member’s family, school, community and Boys & Girls Club, as well as personal challenges and obstacles overcome. This program was founded over 60 years ago through the generosity of the Reader’s Digest Foundation.
“The Reader’s Digest Foundation has been the proud sponsor of the Youth of the Year program since 1947,” said Susan Fraysse Russ, executive director, Reader’s Digest Foundation. “For over 60 years, we have had the great honor of saluting amazing teens, like Megan Gunyah, for their dedication to their families, Club, community, and their academic and career goals.”
Gunyah has displayed leadership & service in her clubhouse by volunteering with many programs & activities. Gunyah regularly assists younger club members during Power Hour, a homework help & education program; works as Jr Staff during the summer; and she helps staff with SMART Girls, a health & life skills program for girls.
Gunyah is an invaluable member of her community. She is an outstanding role model for her peers and her service is not limited to the Clubhouse. Gunyah volunteers for a variety of community events, such as dances and potlatches.
Gunyah’s academic success shows her dedication to education. She is a motivated student at Metlakatla High School. Gunyah takes pride in her school and participates in volleyball, basketball, and cross-country running. She is also very involved in student government and Academic Decathlon. Gunyah manages to excel in her extra-curricular activities and maintain a 4.0 GPA at the same time.
Being a student athlete herself, Gunyah has expressed serious interest in a career as a physical therapist. Her history and compassion make her especially suited for this life goal. Gunyah plans to obtain her Associates and Bachelor Degrees at the University of Alaska Anchorage, then move on to the University of Washington for further specialization.
Megan and all Youth of the Year nominees are living proof that Boys & Girls Clubs across the country are fulfilling their mission of inspiring and enabling young people,” said Roxanne Spillett, president, BGCA. “We are most appreciative to the Reader’s Digest Foundation for their long-time support of our Youth of the Year program and for helping Club members attain their goals.”
This summer, Gunyah will compete against other youth from states located in BGCA’s Pacific Region. If named regional winner, she will be awarded a $10,000 college scholarship and advance to the national competition in Washington. The National Youth of the Year receives an additional $15,000 college scholarship and will be installed by President Barack Obama during a ceremony in the Oval Office.
As the founding sponsor of the Youth of the Year program, the Reader’s Digest Foundation has given nearly $8 million towards BGCA and 62 teens have been selected as the National Youth of the Year. For more information about the Youth of the Year program, visit www.bgca.org/yoy.

About Boys & Girls Clubs of Southcentral Alaska
The Metlakatla Boys & Girls Club has been serving youth in their community since 1999. This clubhouse is part of a charter that spans 45 communities across the state of Alaska. The Boys & Girls Clubs offer youth in the community a safe place to play, learn, and develop friendships. Club staff are dedicated to serving young people and families, and making their communities stronger and safer. For more information about a club near you, go to www.bgcalaska.org.

About Boys & Girls Clubs of America
For more than 100 years, Boys & Girls Clubs of America (www.bgca.org) has been changing and saving young lives, providing hope and opportunity for kids who need them most. Today, some 4,300 Clubs serve some 4.8 million young people through Club membership and community outreach. Known as The Positive Place for Kids, Boys & Girls Clubs can be found all across the country and on U.S. military bases throughout the world. Clubs provide young people 6-18 years old with guidance-oriented character development programs conducted by trained, professional staff. In communities large and small, Clubs positively impact lives and help young people reach their full potential as productive, caring citizens. Key Boys & Girls Club programs emphasize leadership development; education and career exploration; community service; financial literacy; health and life skills; the arts; sports, fitness and recreation; and family outreach. In a recent Harris Survey of Club alumni, 57 percent said the Club saved their life. National headquarters are located in Atlanta.

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  139     February 19, 2009 - 11:24am | syack

First Red Boucher tech scholarship awarded to Bethel student

A Bethel student studying Robotic Engineering in Massachusetts is the first recipient of the Red Boucher Scholarship, established by the Alaska Society of Technology in Education and administered by Alaska Community Foundation.

The award will be made at 8 a.m. Monday, Feb. 21, in the main ballroom of the Captain Cook Hotel in Anchorage, with the recipient, Doug Lucas, accepting it via teleconference from Worcester Polytechnic Institute, where he attends. The award will be presented during the morning session at the ASTE annual conference.

Lucas, who was raised in Bethel, was inspired to study robotics after representing Alaska at a world robotics competition in his junior and senior years of high school, he said.

"The $1,000 Red Boucher scholarship is the first of many that will be awarded by ASTE in the coming years," said ASTE Past-President Steve Noonkesser, who noted that Boucher, former lieutenant governor and state representative, is well-known as one of the pioneers of the information age and is nationally recognized as an expert on computer-mediated communications.

"We are very grateful to Red for his many contributions to our state and excited to have been able to set up this scholarship in his name. Red has always been a champion of Alaskan students and learning," Noonkesser said.

Worcester Polytechnic Institute, where Lucas is a freshman, has an active role with the High Frequency Active Auroral Research Program (HAARP) outside of Gakona, where studies continue on properties of the aurora borealis' electromagnetic waves in the ionosphere.

More about the scholarship can be found at http://www.alaskacf.org or by calling Steve Noonkesser, 907-229-2624.

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  138     January 14, 2009 - 2:59pm | jkoskela

Ashley Clark Earns Girl Scout Gold Award

Ashley Clark recently earned her Girl Scout Gold Award, the highest award that can be earned by a Girl Scout.

To complete the Gold Award, a Senior Girl Scout must first earn seven other recognitions that promote community service, career exploration, positive values and leadership skills. The final requirement is a service project that has a positive and lasting impact on the community and takes at least 50 hours to work. Ashley’s project was a recycling program at Taku Elementary School.

Ashley has been a Girl Scout since she was in the first grade. She graduated from Service High School in in 2008 and is currently a freshman at UAA. She is the daughter of Robert and Janice Clark of Anchorage.

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  136     December 31, 2008 - 10:48am | charlene1

Anchorage Project Access Presents Awards

Anchorage Project Access recently presented the Mt. Huntington Award to four of the programs volunteer health care providers. The Award symbolizes the steep climb to improved health. Richard Willard, one of the first individuals to receive health care through Project Access, presented the program with an aerial photo of Mt. Huntington. Rising 12,240' in the Alaska Range, Mt. Huntington is considered one of the most challenging peaks to climb in the world. The Award was acknowledged and signed by Mayor Begich and Bill Hogan, State Commissioner, DHSS and presented to: Dr. David McGuire, Alaska Orthopedic Specialists; Dr. Douglas Haghighi, Internal Medicine Associates; Dr. Byron Perkins, Cornerstone Clinic and Dr. Buffinton Burtis.

Anchorage Project Access connects low income uninsured with donated health care. To date, over 1,030 patients have been treated by this volunteer network of local physicians. Currently, 405 health care providers participate in Project Access representing 39 specialties.

For more information, call 339-8746.


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  133     December 24, 2008 - 11:45am | jkoskela

Girl Scout Volunteers Honored

Twelve Girl Scout volunteers were honored for their service to Girl Scouting at the annual meeting of Girl Scouts Susitna Council held on Saturday, November 15, 2008 at the Nicholas Begich Middle School in Anchorage.

Susan Gamache and Peggy Kugel, both of Anchorage were recipients of the Girl Scout Thanks Badge, the highest award presented to an adult volunteer. Kathy Day of Anchorage received the Girl Scout Honor Pin. Amy Arsenault, Jennifer Baldwin, Susan Berger, Paige deAlbuquerque, Bright Nygard, Krissy Plett and Nancy Tone of Anchorage and Margaret Herron of Bethel were recipients of the Girl Scout Appreciation Pin. Paul Lyon of Soldotna was named the Girl Scout Spouse of the Year, and the Tundra Drums received the Girl Scout Media Award.

Girl Scouts Susitna Council serves over 5,000 girls in southcentral Alaska.


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  132     November 20, 2008 - 3:30pm | smanlangit

Anchorage Woman Wins Prestigious Award from Weight Watchers

Weight Watchers is pleased to announce that Phyllis Finley of Anchorage has been awarded the Jean Nidetch Service Vision Leader of the Year Award. This award, named for the founder of Weight Watchers, is given out annually to one outstanding Weight Watchers meeting Leader in Alaska who embodies the core philosophy of exceptional customer care. It is meant to recognize the Leader who has gone above and beyond, and strives to ensure that every person feels motivated to succeed in losing weight, part of the group, cared for and well informed.

According to Finley, her primary goal as a Weight Watchers Leader is to help members stay focused and motivated by helping them set goals for themselves. “I emphasize keeping sight of the benefits of weight loss - good health, more energy, smaller clothes, and the feeling of being in control of your life,” said Finley.

After losing weight herself 10 years ago, Finley became a Weight Watchers employee and today she provides people the opportunity to discuss healthy eating, incorporating activity and changing behaviors in a supportive environment. Currently she hosts 12 Weight Watchers meetings each week and supports over 350 people with their own weight-loss goals.

“I am honored to present this award to Phyllis,” said Linda Montgomery, Territory Manager for Weight Watchers. “She consistently encourages her members to achieve their weight loss goals, and energize her fellow co-workers to do the same. At the end of the day, more and more people live healthier lifestyles because of her support and enthusiasm.”

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  130     November 19, 2008 - 10:29am | clbieberakaz

Craig Bieber's Novel, Saylor's Triangle

My fiction novel, Saylor's Triangle, which was published in 2008, has been selected to be in the national book event, the Tucson Festival of Books, in March of 2009. I am a resident of Anchorage, and this novel is based primarily in Alaska. It currently has a consensus 5 Star rating on Amazon Books. I will be doing a book signing at Borders Books on Dimond between 1 pm and 3 pm on November 30th. Craig Bieber

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  129     November 5, 2008 - 12:20pm | bwoodin

Adoption Fair

Letter to the editor:
Alaska Center for Resource Families would like to thank everyone that contributed to making the Adoption Awareness and Information Fair 11/1/08 a huge success. Presenters from the following agencies shared their time and expertise: Office of Children’s Services, Heritage Adoption Center, Catholic Social Services, Volunteers of America, Knik Tribe, Chickaloon Traditional Village, Court Appointed Special Advocates and private attorney Karen Jennings. We also need to thank our fantastic volunteers: The Gette Girls, Genie’s Gang, CHS National Honor Society, Tyler and Villi from Job Corps. Thanks also to the wonderful adoptive families and youth that shared their stories: the Campbells, the Hubbards, Ruth Josten, Tyler and Villi. Finally, we want to thank the generous businesses for their donations: Slack’s Sugar Shack, Bagels Alaska, North Star Bakery, Shane Lamb studio, AK RR, Jim and Greda Humphrey, WalMart, MEA, BP, Iditarod Gift Shop, Fireside Books, Walden Book Store, AK Cheesecake, Treasure Loft, Ewe First, and Pandemonium Booksellers.

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  128     October 24, 2008 - 8:59am | embley_heidi

ASD bus drivers honored for safe driving

In recognition of national School Bus Safety Week, Oct. 20-24, the Anchorage School District Transportation Department celebrated school bus drivers today. The department handed out safe driving awards to 63 drivers who had a combined record of 366 hours of safe driving last school year. Drivers also received recognition for consecutive years without an accident. Awards ranged from one to 19 years.

“Our school bus drivers do most of their work on roads covered with snow and ice so their safe driving records are particularly remarkable,” said Steve Kalmes, director of ASD Transportation.

More than 20,000 ASD students ride the district’s own 80 buses, plus 157 more contracted through Forsythe Transportation. In total, Anchorage public school buses travel 3 million miles annually.

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration reports school buses are still the safest form of transportation in the United States noting they are nearly eight times safer than passenger vehicles.

School Bus Safety Week also recognizes the hard work and dedication of school transportation personnel, including drivers and attendants.

The Transportation Department encourages students, parents and drivers to review basic bus safety rules and facts.

For students and parents

- During most of the school year, ASD students walk to or from school and bus stops in the dark. Adding strips of reflective tape to backpacks and coats can make students more visible to drivers.

- Students should arrive at the bus stop at least five minutes before the scheduled arrival of the bus. Students should stay out of the street while waiting and not horseplay.

- Students should remain seated on the bus at all times and not shout or distract the driver. Students should also keep their arms and head inside the bus at all times.

- Students should listen to the bus driver and obey his or her safety rules.

- Students should wait for the bus to come to a complete stop before getting on or off. Students should know that the driver has a "blind spot" - the area from the front of the bus to about 10 feet in front of the bus - and they should not walk in this area after they get off.

For other drivers on the road

- Slow down to the reduced speed limits in school zones when the yellow lights are flashing.

- If the white strobe light on the top of the bus is flashing, that means students are on board the bus. Other drivers should be on the watch for the bus stopping to pick up or drop off students.

For more information, contact ASD Transportation Director Steve Kalmes at 742-1200.

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  127     October 17, 2008 - 8:27am | valorieann

Ray Oyemi; Kellogg School of Management alumni.


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  126     October 17, 2008 - 8:24am | valorieann

Congratulations! New Kellogg School of Management Alumni.

Super commuter and community achiever; Anchorage business executive officially joined the ranks of Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management Alumni.

Mr. Ray Oyemi, a Portfolio Manager & Business Intermediary serves on the board of BOMA International, Anchorage. Ray, who received his undergraduate degree from Syracuse University, New York, is also a graduate of The Foraker Group Certificate for Nonprofit Management offered by The Foraker Group and the University of Alaska Fairbanks.

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  125     October 15, 2008 - 8:53am | akjesster8

Dr. Ping-Tung Chang Scholarship Fund endowed at Mat-Su College

The University of Alaska Anchorage Mat-Su College is pleased to announce the Dr. Ping-Tung Chang Scholarship Fund has reached the $25,000 endowment minimum. The ultimate goal for the endowment fund is $100,000. The first scholarship from this fund will be awarded in Spring 2009.

The scholarship will be awarded annually to qualifying, full-time UAA students who are Alaska residents. Students who are past or present Mat-Su College Math Club members in good academic standing will be given preference.

Dr. Ping-Tung Chang is a professor of mathematics at Mat-Su College. He has worked at the University of Alaska Anchorage for the past 20 years. During his time at UAA, Dr. Chang has received many awards in recognition of his exemplary skills as an educator. His awards include: the Chancellor’s Outstanding Full-Time Faculty Award; the Teaching Excellence Award for Outstanding Teaching from the University of Alaska Anchorage Teaching Excellence Program; and the UAA Alumni Association Distinguished Professor Award, to name a few.

In 2007, Dr. Chang went to China on a lecture tour. He plans to return this winter to present at some of China’s finest educational institutes and universities.

Dr. Chang works hard to serve both his students and the community. Many of his students have gone on to become successful scientists, educators, business professionals and administrators.

For further information, or to make a donation, contact UAA’s Office of Development at (907) 786-4847. Tax-exempt donations may also be mailed to Dr. Ping-Tung Chang Endowed Scholarship Fund, c/o UAA Office of Development, 3211 Providence Drive, ADM 236, Anchorage, AK 99508.

Mat-Su College, a University of Alaska Anchorage community campus, offers more than 200 courses to 1,500 students on its beautiful 950-acre campus, the largest in the University of Alaska system. This year marks Mat-Su College’s 50th Anniversary.

For additional information, contact (907) 745-9721 or visit the Mat-Su College Web site at www.matsu.alaska.edu.

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  124     October 7, 2008 - 11:24am | paywiz

Member passes the CPP

Lauran Gularte - member of the Mat-Su Valley Chapter and the Northern Lights Chapter of the American Payroll Association passed the requirements to obtain her CPP - Certified Payroll Professional.

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  123     September 28, 2008 - 2:24pm | bgwest

Anchorage Soroptimist Clubs Lasso International Award

ANCHORAGE – Soroptimist International of Anchorage and Soroptimist International of Cook Inlet – the two Anchorage-area Soroptimist clubs – were awarded the “Best Practice International Recognition 2007-2008” award recently at Windsor, UK, by Soroptimist International President, Margaret Lobo.

This recognition was a result of a new program launched by the two clubs in October 2007 and named “Each One Teach One.” Under this program, the two clubs provided scholarships to 15 girls and young women for the spring semester 2008. The EOTO program partners the two clubs in a scholarship program for girls and young women in Titania, on the island of Gizo, in the Solomon Islands. This community was devastated in the April 2007 earthquake, magnitude 8.0, and the resulting tsunami.

Historically, the girls of the Solomon Islands are second-class citizens. Education is not free for any child in the islands, and if a family faces a choice between sending a son or a daughter to school, the son wins. In recent years, there has been a high incidence of young girls sold and sexually exploited. Solomon Island girls can marry at age 15, and are exchanged for a bride price of shell money – perpetuating the attitude that women are “property.” Very few women serve in high level or government positions in the Solomons, and most women hold menial jobs. More than two-thirds of all the women and girls in the Solomons are illiterate.

The Anchorage clubs have worked collectively with the Soroptimist International of the Solomon Islands to establish a link through which the funds can reach the girls intended to receive them, and to assure accountability and integrity in the program. The clubs also worked to develop tools to assist with fundraising and to invite other organizations, including other Soroptimist clubs, to join with us in supporting the project.

Soroptimist International is a vibrant, dynamic organization for professional and business women in the 21st Century. It reaches 124 countries and territories, and has approximately 90,000 members in more than 3,000 clubs. These dynamic women are committed to a world of peace, equality and human rights for all. They strive for an equal voice in creating strong peaceful communities worldwide.

For more information on Soroptimist International, go to www.soroptimistinternational.org .

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  122     August 12, 2008 - 11:34am | LBrockmeyer

Local Resident Has Quilts Accepted in Midwest Quilt Expo Contest

Maria Shell, a resident of Anchorage, has had quilts titled "Rolling Thunder," and "Boxy 9-Patch" accepted in the Quilt Expo quilt contest.

The 10-category juried and judged contest is part of the Quilt Expo held in the Exhibition Hall at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison, Wis.

The contest awards first-, second- and third-place cash prizes in each of the 10 categories. The first-place winner in each category receives $500, second-place $300 and third-place $200, plus a Best of Show winner is awarded $1,500. From the entries, a special Viewers' Choice winner is voted on by Quilt Expo attendees and receives $500.

The 2008 Quilt Expo –– 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 11 through Saturday, Sept. 13 –– is presented by Wisconsin Public Television (WPT) and Nancy Zieman Productions.

Event highlights include the quilt contest exhibit, additional special quilt exhibits, Sit & Sew, and hands-on workshops taught by leading quilting educators, stage presentations with innovative tips and techniques, and appearances by Nancy Zieman of public television’s Sewing With Nancy®. Businesses in the vendor mall will offer the latest quilting products, and at 6 p.m. Thursday and Friday two special events provide the chance to laugh and relax.

For complete details and to register for workshops, lectures and evening events, visit wiquiltexpo.com on the Web or call 866-297-6545.

Funding for Quilt Expo is provided by Nancy's Notions, Baby Lock, Husqvarna Viking Sewing Machine Co., Janome America Inc., Bernina, Brother International Corp., Coats & Clark, Hinterberg Design Inc., It's For Quilting, Pfaff and Quilt Center — Gammill/Statler Stitcher.

WPT is a service of the Educational Communications Board and the University of Wisconsin-Extension.

Wisconsin Public Television is a place to grow through learning on WHA-TV/DT, Madison; WPNE-TV/DT, Green Bay; WHRM-TV/DT, Wausau; WLEF-TV/DT, Park Falls; WHLA-TV/DT, La Crosse; and WHWC-TV/DT, Menomonie-Eau Claire.

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  121     August 12, 2008 - 8:16am | Momsparty

Pioneer Alaskan celebrates 90th birthday on August 29th.

Born in 1918 in Minnesotta, Mary Carle (maiden name of Owen) drove to Alaska in August  1947 with her husband, Wilmer C. (Bill) Carle.  She found a AAA publication on the route and restrictions of driving to Alaska published in 1947, but double checked along the way that they were indeed headed to Alaska! She started her high school math teaching career at Anchorage High School (located downtown Anchorage).Bill Carle became the principal of Central Junior High School. For celebration info call 223-3711. 

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  120     July 28, 2008 - 8:51pm | ccrinehart

Alaska Writers Score High in Communications Contest

Alaska writers and media communicators made a strong showing in the 2008 national contest sponsored by the National Federation of Press Women (NFPW). Alaska had 21 winning entries, including 11 first places, from 13 individuals.
Alaska did especially well in television journalism and in the book authoring categories. Rhonda McBride, who is now on the staff of Gov. Sarah Palin, took first place in three categories for her work for KTUU-TV Channel 2. She also took second place in another category and, significantly, placed second in a competition for individual achievement in any medium.
Sheila Balistreri took two first places for her work for Channel 2, "The Morning Edition with Sheila Balistreri."
Steve Levi took first place in fiction writing for his novel, "Cadzow," set in Alaska and published by Lachesis Publishing of Nova Scotia, Canada. This is the third year in a row that Alaska has placed first in the novel category.
Aliza Sherman Risdahl took first in non-fiction book, instructional, for her how-to book on starting an internet business. Part of the Adams Streetwise series published by F+W Publications, Inc., the book is titled "Streetwise eCommerce: Establish Your Online Business, Expand Your Reach, and Watch Your Profits Soar."
The local affiliate of NFPW is Alaska Professional Communicators (APC), based in Anchorage. Each year the organization, with about 70 members in the writing and media communication fields, offers a contest at the state level. State first place winners go to the national contest.
The awards will be presented Sept. 13 at the NFPW conference in Idaho Falls, Idaho.
Alaska's national winners follow, in alphabetical order:
Sheila Balistreri: 1st, best television newscast, and 1st, best television presentation, both for "The Morning Edition with Sheila Balistreri."
Mary Katzke and Deborah Schildt: 1st, poster campaign for the Alaska Office of Breast and Cervical Health Partnership; 3rd, video productions, "For the Love of Riley" for the Arc of Anchorage.
Steve Levi: 1st, fiction, novel, "Cadzow."
Ginny Mahar: 1st, personal column or critic's review, radio, "The Sauk," KTOO 104.3 FM.
Rhonda McBride: 1st, on-scene spot report, television, "Walrus Bellies"; 1st, prepared report, television, "49th Cello"; 1st, television interview, "Fallen Heroes Project"; 2nd, television special programming, "Bethel Remembers"; 2nd, individual achievement. All work for KTUU-TV Channel 2.
Amy Murphy: 1st, single advertisement, AVEC Cooperative Month ad, Delta Discovery and Ruralite magazine; 3rd, annual report, internal, Alaska Village Electric Co-op Annual Report; Hon. Mention, community or institutional relations program, Kalskag high school story writing project, for AVEC.
Elise Patkotak: 2nd, personal columns, general, "We're each part of some minority" and "Beware the power of the 'babe'," Anchorage Daily News; 2nd, newsletter, one- to three-color, "The Flight Feather," for Bird TLC.
Aliza Sherman Risdahl: 1st, non-fiction book, instructional, "Streetwise eCommerce: Establish Your Online Business, Expand Your Reach, and Watch Your Profits Soar."
Yereth Rosen: 2nd, personality profile, "The Moose Babysitter," Christian Science Monitor.
Sherrie Simmonds: 1st, annual report, CD-electronics, "2006 Annual Report--celebrating 60 years of housing Alaskans," for Alaska Housing Finance Corp.
Alan Sorum: 2nd, manuals and handbooks, "Clean Boating," for University of Alaska Fairbanks.
Linda Thompson: Hon. Mention, non-fiction book, religious or inspirational, "Erik's Story, Finding His Gifts Against All Odds in Rural Alaska," published by Publication Consultants of Anchorage.

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  119     July 1, 2008 - 5:04pm | abomb1010

Anchorage East Rotary Announces New Board of Directors

Anchorage East Rotary is excited to announce its new Board of Directors for the 2008-2009 Rotary Year beginning July 1.

This past year’s President Kathleen Madden passed her gavel on to President Jeff Thon at a changing of the guard ceremony June 25 at the Captain Cook Hotel. Thon will lead the Board, which includes President-Elect Rick Mystrom, Vice President Greg Solomon, Secretary Diana Strozok, Treasurer Clay Hightower, and Sergeant of Arms Diane Louise. Other board members include Gideon Garcia, Craig Bledsoe, Paul McGuire, Sharon Anderson, Sue Foley, Amy Slinker, Cleo Burgett, Dave Kester, and Richard Woodson.

Rotary is a worldwide organization of more than 1.2 million business, professional, and community leaders. Members of Rotary clubs, known as Rotarians, provide humanitarian service, encourage high ethical standards in all vocations, and help build goodwill and peace in the world. As signified by the motto Service Above Self, Rotary’s main objective is service — in the community, in the workplace, and throughout the world.

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  118     May 29, 2008 - 12:42pm | pvs7647

Phyllis Searles Named Certified Professional Organizer® (CPO®)

Anchorage, Alaska- Phyllis D. Searles has received the prestigious designation of Certified Professional Organizer® (CPO®) from the Board of Certification for Professional Organizers (BCPOSM). She is the first and only Certified Professional Organizer® in the state of Alaska.

Searles owns and operates Organizing Anchorage, a small business providing organizing services, information, resources and skills to create a more organized life for homes and offices.

“The program of certification for professional organizers acknowledges the importance and value of standards in our industry. The CPO® contributes to those evolving standards, and represents the epitome of competence, ethics, and professionalism,” says BCPO President Audrey Lavine, CPO®.

“I congratulate Phyllis on her initiative in being the first NAPO member to earn the CPO® designation in Alaska,” says NAPO President Standolyn Robertson, CPO®. NAPO is the National Organization of Professional Organizers, which Searles joined in 1997.

“The reason I pursued my CPO®,” says Phyllis Searles, CPO®, “is to recognize my own proficiency and knowledge of the industry, as well as demonstrate my commitment to continued professional development. It demonstrates my continued investment in my business and the professional organizing industry.” Searles recently attended the 20th Annual Conference of the National Association of Professional Organizers the major conference for the professional organizing industry, in Reno, NV.

What is CPO® Certification?
CPO® Certification is a voluntary, industry-led effort which benefits the public and members of the organizing profession. CPO® Certification recognizes those professionals who have met specific minimum qualifications and proven through examination and client interaction to possess the body of knowledge and experience required for certification. The program recognizes and raises industry standards, practices, and ethics. While the CPO® designation is not an endorsement or recommendation, certification of professional organizers maximizes the value received from the services provided and products recommended by a CPO®.

What is a professional organizer?
A professional organizer enhances the lives of clients by designing systems and processes using organizing principles and through transferring organizing skills. A professional organizer also educates the public on organizing solutions and the resulting benefits. Professional organizers help individuals and businesses take control of their surroundings, their time, their paper, and their systems for life.

About Organizing Anchorage
Phyllis Searles is an expert in managing paper, creating filing systems, retention guidelines and is an authorized Paper Tiger Consultant. After more than 10 years of using and selling the software as an authorized reseller Searles was personally trained and mentored by Barbara Hemphill, author of Taming the Paper Tiger at Home and Taming the Paper Tiger at Work. For more information, please call 907-245-3524 or www.organizinganchorage.com.

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  117     May 27, 2008 - 7:32am | dinagruey

Drivers Earn Honors at Alaska Truck Driving Championship

Two drivers representing FedEx Corp. operating companies placed among the winners at the 2008 Alaska State Truck Driving Championship in Anchorage on May 16-17.

--Scott Watts, a driver for FedEx Express based in Anchorage, captured the top spot in the 5-Axle class to earn his fourth state title in five years. He also won the coveted Grand Champion title for achieving the highest score among the winners of each class. Watts is the reigning national champion in the Straight Truck class.

--Doug Rickel, also a FedEx Express driver based in Anchorage, finished second in the Straight Truck class.

Watts will go on to compete at the American Trucking Associations’ 2008 National Truck Driving Championships (NTDC), known as the “Super Bowl of Safety” August 20-23 in Houston. In addition, each state winner will be recognized by FedEx as part of its safe driving initiative, The Chairman’s Challenge.

The Alaska State Truck Driving Championship is an opportunity for professional truck drivers to demonstrate their driving skills and commitment to safety. The event includes a difficult driving skill test, pre-trip inspection, personal interview and written examination covering vehicle operation and knowledge of federal safety regulations.

In 2007, a record 78 driving professionals from 38 states representing FedEx Freight, FedEx Ground, FedEx Express, FedEx Custom Critical and FedEx Global Supply Chain Services qualified to compete at the National Truck Driving Championships by winning their respective state's competition and driving accident-free for at least one year. FedEx drivers captured National Champion titles in the Flatbed and Straight Truck classes and the NTDC Rookie of the Year honor. In addition, FedEx drivers earned five additional top-three finishes in their respective vehicle classes.

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  116     May 13, 2008 - 6:49pm | DeniceHarris


A.J. Chriswell owner of Accurate Import and Larry Call owner of Call’s Repair, both in Anchorage have received the AAA Top Shop 5 Star Award for doing an exemplary job in meeting the automotive service needs of customers. Chriswell and Call were awarded with a special plaque for winning the Top Shop award for at least 5 consecutive years.

AAA Approved Auto Repair facilities from all over Montana, Alaska and Wyoming competed for this award. The Top Shop 5 Star Award is the highest award possible and Accurate Import and Call’s Repair were two of only 7 facilities to earn this prestigious designation.

The two shops were named the AAA Top Shops based on their consistent record of exceeding AAR requirements, number of ASE certificates held by its technicians, level of participation in the AAR program and overall customer satisfaction.

All shops designated as AAA Approved Auto Repair facilities must meet AAA’s stringent standards including passing a site inspection, having up to date equipment and ASE certified technicians. Facilities must have a 90 percent customer satisfaction rating and a good reputation with local government and consumer agencies. Adequate insurance coverage and financial stability are also considered.

While all AAR shops do an outstanding job, Top Shop award recognize the best of the best. The employees at Accurate Import and Call’s Repair consistently deliver outstanding repair and customer service.

AAA MountainWest Club is dedicated to providing its over 160,000 members in Alaska, Montana and Wyoming with travel, insurance, financial and auto-related services. A fully taxpaying, not for profit corporation, AAA MountainWest, Inc. works for the improvement of motoring and traveling conditions and is a leader for travel, civic and safety issues. AAA can be visited on the Internet at www.aaa.com.


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  115     April 25, 2008 - 11:47am | connie_luque

Wayland Baptist University Graduates 72 Students

Wayland Baptist University held its Spring 2008 graduation ceremony on Friday, April 18. A total of 72 students were graduated, with 11 students earning their Master’s Degree, 55 earning their degree in Bachelor of Science in Occupational Education, and 6 earning their Associate of Applied Science Degree. The ceremony was held at 3:00 PM in Wayland’s Parkside Campus auditorium.

The student speakers were Linda and Thomas Hoffman, who spoke to students about the importance of Wayland and the challenges of being adult learners. “The thing that connects us is that life was not placed on hold while we went to school. Family, work, and responsibilities were parts of our everyday lives and school was something extra you accomplished in addition to life, not in preparation for life,” Thomas Hoffman said.

The commencement address was delivered by Dr. Elane Seebo, Academic Vice President of External Campuses in Plainview, Texas. She spoke about having a return on the investment of an education.

She told students, “According to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, if you are being awarded an associate’s degree, you have just increased you annual earning capacity, on average, by about $5,000 a year, which equates to life-time earnings of almost a quarter of a million dollars over your counterpart with a high school diploma. For a bachelor’s degree, make that about $18,000 a year, or nearly a million dollars over your lifetime. And, for those of you earning advanced degrees, you annual income, on average, is more than double that of your high-school graduate counterpart, with your lifetime earnings at least 1.25 million dollars higher.”

Dr. Eric Ash, Anchorage Campus Dean, presented the candidates for degrees and Dr. Seebo conferred the degrees and presented the diplomas.

By category, a Master’s Degree in was presented to the following students:

Master of Christian Ministry
Thomas Albert Hoffman and Kwang Guy Park

Master of Arts in Management
Randall L. Bowker, Andrew B. Carling, Andrew K. Freed, Bethany M. Ordway, William Reasoner, and Leslie Antionette Vines

Master of Business Administration
Stacy Lynn Cooper, Matthew Scott Mills, and Joshua A. Shaver

A Bachelor of Science in Occupational Education degree was awarded to Lara A. Bailey, Clint W. Bateman, Matthew R. Bloodgood, William G. Brandt, John H. Brindley, Stevan W. Cady, Christine Marie Carlin, Jonathan David Carroll, Stacey E. Cassaday, Heidi N. Chester, Marlene Childs, Brandy B. Coonrod, Mark Wayne Cooper II, Twyla Michelle Cox-Keyes, Bonnie J. Dorman, John Joseph Douglas, Joy N. Fearn, Kathleen Dianne Fulks, Catherine Marcella Gage, Bryan Keith Grella, James Daniel Harris, Barbara Ann Hartsell, Linda L. Hoffman, Jason M. Howland, Sara Rochelle Jefferson, Barbara Anderson Johnson, Brian S. Johnson, Araceli Jones, Catherine Deshaun Keeton, Stephen James Lee, Jan Cameron Lego, Paul T. Lincoln, Pamela J. Masor, Erica Lynn McCray, Joseph S. McGough, Timothy P. Munoz, Cody L. Musgrave, Jeffrey Lynn Myers, Paul R. Norris, Robert A. Orrill, Barbara A. Priddle, Jennifer Marie Robinson, Roland Frank Romero, Isaac V. Roper Charles, Jazan Saplan Siapno, Bryan D. Sisco, Victor Solano, RaeDene K. Turner, Tracey Jackman Turner, Ben R. Ungudruk, Karen Ann Waples, Michael Allen Wayt, Terilyn Welborn, Phillip O. Wilson, and Tawana Young.

Associate of Applied Science degrees were earned by Elizabeth Barrientoz, Phoebe L. Brooks, Keith D. Gholston, Nathan M. Keays, Jeffrey Allen Martin, and Scott C. Nissen.

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  114     April 23, 2008 - 7:35am | AADSC

Alaska Alliance for Direct Service Careers Announces the Winners

The Alaska Alliance for Direct Service Careers is pleased to announce the 2008 winners of the Outstanding Direct Service Professionals of the Year Award Winners. The Winners were announced during the Full Lives Conference held in Anchorage; the winners are:

Falicia Forrell-Stevens – a day habilitation specialist who works for the FOCUS, Inc in Chugiak was highlighted for her work with people with developmental disabilities.

Dinah Backford - a respite caregiver with Bristol Bay Area Health Center in Dillingham was highlighted for her work with people who need mental health services.

Patricia Swan-Smith – who works at the Alaska Family Services in Wasilla as a substance abuse counselor was recognized for her work with people in Substance Abuse and/or Alcoholism treatment programs.

Elizabeth Howard – a caregiver at the Swan Lake Senior Center in Sitka was recognized for his work with Seniors with Alzheimer’s or Related Dementia.

Frank Box – an independent living specialist at Access Alaska in Anchorage was recognized for his work with people with Traumatic Brain Injuries.

Alaska Alliance for Direct Service Careers is a statewide membership based organization (aadsc.org) working on the public image, recruitment, retention and training of direct support personnel who work in a variety of settings serving individuals with developmental disabilities, Alzheimer's disease and related disorders, mental illness, and chronic alcoholism throughout Alaska. We are a coalition of agencies, state policy makers, administrators, and direct service professionals, who are committed to strengthening the direct service workforce and addressing the industry wide conditions that are harmful to the people who rely on direct services.

With the help of our funder, the Alaska Mental Health Authority, and our partners, the Governor’s Council on Disabilities and Special Education and the Center for Human Development, The Alaska Alliance for Direct Service Careers we have been able to give out these awards for the past six years. The winners received a trip to the Full Lives Conference held in Anchorage as well as $1,000 to fund personal and professional development goals and a gift certificate for next year’s registration to the Full Lives Conference.

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  113     April 4, 2008 - 8:26am | bgwest


Soroptimist International of Anchorage will hold its annual awards banquet Wednesday, April 23, 2008, at the Anchorage Hilton Hotel. This event celebrates three annual awards presented by the club to Anchorage-area women who have supported women and women’s issues. A fourth award will go to a young woman who volunteers her efforts to create a better community.

Jo Michalski, owner of Classic Woman, is the 2008 recipient of the Making A Difference for Women Award. This award honors women who use their personal or professional influence to improve the lives of other women. This recognition program is international in scope — beginning with an award at the Soroptimist International of Anchorage club level. The winner of this award may advance to other levels of the international Soroptimist organization.

In addition to providing professional clothing for women, Michalski has been recognized for her substantial contributions to the League of Women Voters, the YWCA of Anchorage and the Anchorage Chamber of Commerce ATHENA Society.

Cook Inlet Region, Inc. will receive the award for Advancing the Status of Women. This local award goes to an organization that actively promotes recognition of women’s issues through creative or innovative work.

CIRI has many women in management positions throughout the company -- three of the top five executives are female, including the president and chief executive officer, the chief operating officer and a senior vice president. CIRI corporate employs 73 people, 52 of whom are women. The corporation and its subsidiaries have long encouraged and supported women in leadership.

President and Chief Executive Officer Margie Brown, an Alaska Native and a CIRI shareholder, began working for CIRI in the Land Department in 1976, and has worked her way up the corporate ladder. Brown and her team are leading the company to high levels of success. In 2006, CIRI’s net revenue was $108.8 million on gross revenue of $207.9 million. These achievements translate to significant benefits for many shareholders. The company's cumulative distributions to approximately 7,300 shareholders have totaled $855.8 million.

The third award, the Woman of Distinction Award, will go to Anchorage Superintendent of Schools Carol Comeau. Women of Distinction are women who are ideal role models for other women. They have made outstanding achievements in their professional, business or voluntary activities and in doing so have demonstrated exemplary character and leadership. Their achievements have made a difference in at least one of these categories: economic and social development, education, environment, and health, human rights/status of women, and international goodwill and understanding.

Comeau believes strongly that it is essential to be an active participant in community organizations, which was a significant factor in her selection as the 2004 ATHENA Award recipient. As an ATHENA Society member and Anchorage School District Superintendent, Comeau has actively supported the ATHENA Society's Camp $tart-Up program which provides scholarships to Anchorage high-school-aged young women to attend entrepreneurship training programs. With her assistance, 23 young women from Anchorage high schools have attended Camp $tart-Up programs.

This year’s Violet Richardson award will go to Kelsey Fall. The Violet Richardson award is a national recognition program for young women ages 14-17 engaged in volunteer action within their communities or schools. The award is given to young women whose activities make the community and world a better place.

Fall, her mother and her brother, started the Red, White and Blue Marching Band four years ago to provide a way for students from all walks of life to come together in a positive way and provide great music for the community in the annual 4th of July parade. The band began with just 25 musicians and has grown to more than 65.

Kelsey also helps to organize Service High School’s silent auctions, held during school conferences, to raise money for the high school. Each year, these auctions make nearly $1,000, and 20 percent of this money goes to help a selected charity. The rest of the funds help to support school events such as proms, senior breakfasts and senior fun days, making these events free or more affordable to classmates.

Tickets for the award banquet are $55 each, and may be obtained from Nancy Johnson at 762-9205. For more information about the awards or the dinner, call Gail West at 243-8413.

Soroptimist, a 501(c)(3) organization, offers programs that improve social and economic conditions for women and girls. Programs include the Women’s Opportunity Awards, which provides cash grants for head-of-household women seeking to improve their lives with the help of additional education and training. Each year, more than $1 million is disbursed through this award-winning program. In recognition of the power of women and their dreams, Soroptimist also sponsors the Live Your Dream campaign. Visit the campaign's online home at: www.liveyourdreamcampaign.org. Visit Soroptimist’s main site at www.soroptimist.org to learn more about the organization and its work on behalf of the world’s women and girls.

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  112     February 14, 2008 - 4:30pm | smilystyna


February 14, 2008


Cooperators in the Anchorage Soil & Water Conservation District elected two new members to the District’s Board of Supervisors and returned its Chair for another term.

Linda Boggs and Bret Burroughs were elected to 2 and 1-year terms, respectively, on the five-person board. A well-known equestrian, Boggs is the managing partner of Les Vogt Performance Programs LLC, which produces the popular Cowhorse U training and Les Vogt’s Equine Insights television show. Boggs served as Director of Marketing for Carr Gottstein Properties and GCI for many years and now does marketing and business consulting from her home.

Burroughs lives on a small farm on the lower hillside and owns a business that specialized in rotating equipment, such as turbines, pumps, compressors and generators.

A board member since 2003, Greg Bell has served as board chair since 2005. Bell owns Valley Sawmill in Anchorage and Point MacKenzie, and has been involved with forestry and Southcentral issues since 1970.

The Anchorage Soil & Water Conservation District assists landowners and land managers in the Municipality with conservation and development through technical, financial and educational programs.


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  111     January 30, 2008 - 3:34pm | garychythlook

Rick Mueller named Leadership Development Manager

Rick Mueller named Leadership Development Manager

(ANCHORAGE, AK—Jan. 30, 2008) – First Alaskans Institute announces the recent promotion of Rick Mueller, Tlingit, to the role of Leadership Development Manager. His previous role was Internship Coordinator for the Institute’s Leadership Development Initiative.

In his new position, Mueller will plan, implement, coordinate, and manage the Institute’s Leadership Development initiative. He will oversee all aspects of the initiative in coordination with the program and human resource director at the Institute. The Leadership Development initiative is multi-faceted and requires strong organizational and interpersonal skills.

The initiative at the Institute is helping to develop the next generation of Alaska Native leadership, ensuring that they are connected to their culture and each other. The main programs for the Leadership Development initiative are the Summer Intern Program, Elders & Youth Conference , and two new programs; Public Policy Internship based in Juneau, and “Leadership +”.

The Summer Internship Program focuses on the development of Native leadership, and is open to Alaska Native graduate and undergraduate students. The ten-week summer session has placed approximately one-hundred interns with various employer placements since 2004. Alaska Native students can be placed in internships in their home villages throughout rural Alaska along with the many businesses that provide internships in urban Alaska.

The Elders & Youth Conference hosts more than one thousand participants from rural and urban Alaska. Participants gather each year at the First Alaskans Institute/AFN Elders & Youth Conference, held during AFN Convention week. Native Elders share their wisdom and experience with Native youth to develop and strengthen their leadership skills. For many participants ages 13-18, the conference is their first opportunity to attend a statewide gathering and to engage in serious dialogue on issues relevant to Alaska Natives. Elders and Youth network with statewide organizations and individuals who are making a positive impact on our communities through Native traditions and modern technology alike.

The Public Policy Internship places interested Alaska Natives in partnering legislative offices in Juneau, Alaska. The goal of the legislative internship is that emerging Native leaders will be familiar with the legislative process; will understand their own histories; will learn and use the skill of past, present and future leadership; and will know the emerging issues that confront Alaska Natives and the State of Alaska.

Leadership + provides 30 entry-to-mid-level Alaska Native professionals with networking opportunities and educational seminars. These seminars are designed to increase understanding of Alaska Native history and tradition and to raise awareness of current and emerging issues. The goal of Leadership + is to create a cadre of well-informed Alaska Native professionals that are engaged in the community and contributing to the advancement of Alaska Natives and healthy communities. In 2008 there will be a series of five half-day meetings where a wide variety of topics will be covered. The remaining dates and application form can be found at the Institute web site at www.firstalaskans.org.

Mueller graduated from East High School in Anchorage. He holds a Bachelors of Science of Health Education from Northern Arizona University. Mueller was raised in Juneau and Anchorage. He is a shareholder of the Native Corporation Sealaska Corporation based in Juneau.

First Alaskans Institute is a non-profit organization whose mission is to Advance Alaska Natives Peoples and communities through community engagement, information and research, collaboration, and leadership development. For more information, go to www.firstalaskans.org.

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  110     January 30, 2008 - 8:58am | garychythlook

Memry Dahl passes her Professional Human Resource (PHR) exam

(ANCHORAGE, AK—Jan. 28, 2008) – First Alaskans Institute would like to congratulate Memry Dahl, Unangan (Aleut), on passing her Professional Human Resource (PHR) exam on Tuesday, January 22, 2008. She is now a certified Professional in Human Resources (PHR), which is recognized by The Human Resource Certification Institute (HRCI).

Dahl joined First Alaskans Institute as a Projects Manager in 2005. She is currently Program / Human Resource Director for the Institute. Dahl holds a bachelors degree in Education from the University of Alaska Anchorage and has a certificate in Non-profit Management from the Foraker Group.

PHR certification shows that the holder has demonstrated mastery of the domestic or international Human Resource (HR) body of knowledge and has accepted the challenge to stay informed of new developments in the HR field. Certification is a voluntary action by a professional group to establish a system to grant recognition to professionals who have met a stated level of training and work experience.

From December 2006 to December 2007, eighteen Alaskans were certified with PHR. Of those that attempt to attain certification, only about 61% of the test takers pass the PHR exam. In the state of Alaska there are only 156 people with PHR certification. The HRCI website www.hrci.org has more information regarding the PHR certification.

“It is very satisfying to have completed this certification,” states Dahl, “It was challenging work to prepare for the exam”. Dahl began studying for this exam in the fall with the local chapter of the Society of Human Resource Managers.

Dahl was born and raised in Sand Point, Alaska; she has a strong sense of the issues related to education and leadership development in rural Alaska.

Dahl is a former teacher in the Anchorage School District, president of the Aleutians East Borough School District, assembly member of the Aleutians East Borough, city council member for the City of Sand Point, member of Kappa Delta Pi, current member of the Alaska Society of Human Resource Managers, as well as a member of the University of Alaska Anchorage College of Education Advisory Board.

First Alaskans Institute, a non-profit charitable organization based in Anchorage, works to advance Alaska Natives through community engagement, information and research, collaboration, and leadership development.

HRCI develops and delivers credentialing programs to validate mastery in the field of human resource management and to promote organizational effectiveness. HRCI began certifying HR professionals in 1976. Since February 1976, more than 53,000 HR professionals have been certified nationally.

For more information about First Alaskans Institute visit the Institute web site at www.firstalaskans.org.

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  109     December 17, 2007 - 12:47pm | Amys

Cook Inlet Tribal Council Honored at White House

Cook Inlet Tribal Council, Inc. (CITC) is pleased to announce that Shannon Sommer, Director of Recovery Services at CITC, was invited to attend the White House status report on the decline of adolescent treatment for drug abuse. The event was held on Dec. 11, 2007 in Washington D.C. The status report brought leaders in youth drug abuse prevention together to hear an address from President George W. Bush that detailed the declining use of illegal drugs among America's youth.

The event was by invitation only, and Sommer was the only invitee from Alaska. The White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) extended the invitation at the request of Dr. John Walters—the head of the ONDCP. The principal purpose of ONDCP is to establish policies, priorities, and objectives for the Nation's drug control program.

Sommer was chosen to attend the status report because of her active role in the development of CITC programs designed to offer support to those suffering from drug addiction. CITC's Recovery Services offers both residential and outpatient programs, including the Screening, Brief Intervention, Brief Therapy and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) programs that are offered to adults in partnership with the Southcentral Foundation.

CITC focuses on the prevention and treatment of drug use in the adult community, but Sommer says that preventing and treating adult use directly impacts the rates of usage in the youth population.

CITC's Recovery Services incorporates the "System of Care" model, in which rehabilitation services work in conjunction with mental health services, vocational training, employment, housing services, family and social services in order to provide a full spectrum of care for those who are caught in the cycle of addiction.

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  108     December 10, 2007 - 7:50am | tandrew_ak

Annie Margeson Honored as Sancta Lucia

Annie Margeson, daughter of Marty Margeson of Anchorage, was this year’s “Lucia” at the Swedish Luciadagen festival held on Sunday, December 9 at Viking Hall in Anchorage.

The festivities commemorate St. Lucy who died a martyr in the third century. Today, Sancta Lucia Day is a Swedish custom that is followed by many Scandinavian countries and those of Scandinavian heritage. Traditionally, the eldest daughter in the family, dressed in white with a crown of candles in her hair, serves hot beverages and rolls to her family. Here in Anchorage, this festival includes a talent show, great Scandinavian food, song, and a candlelight procession of the Lucia in her white gown with candles in her hair, followed by her attendants.

A sophomore at Grace Christian School, Annie is an avid and accomplished dancer, competing nationally in Irish dance. She is hoping to compete in the 2008 World Competitions this Spring in Ireland. Annie also enjoys participating in the annual local production of “The Music Machine”, playing summer soccer and helping her mom at their bed and breakfast. When Annie graduates from high school, she plans to attend UAA to become a physical education teacher and to continue participating in dance and soccer. She is honored for the privilege of serving as this year’s Lucia.

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  107     December 7, 2007 - 3:11pm | l_temple

Two Sisters Take Pageant Titles

Sarah Temple (19) and Veronica Temple (14), daughters of Vic & Laura Temple of Eagle River, were elated when they were both selected at the December 1st annual Miss Chugiak-Eagle River/Miss Birchwood pageant. Sarah was crowned 2008 Miss Chugiak-Eagle River, and Veronica crowned Miss Chugiak-Eagle River Outstanding Teen.

Sarah's platform is "Empowering Grandfamilies". Grandfamilies are grandparents who are the primary caregivers of one or more grandchildren. This is a rapidly growing portion of the Alaskan family demographic and they have their own unique needs and challenges. Sarah is overseeing the sponsorship of 12 Grandfamilies for Christmas through her employer, Keller-Williams. Sarah is a freshman at UAA.

Veronica is a freshman with Family Partnership Charter School. Her platform, "Autism Awareness", is in honor of her siblings with autistic spectrum disorders. She is looking forward to opportunities for promoting awareness of careers available in habilitative therapies, educational & social supports, and medical research. Veronica will spend this coming year promoting autism awareness within our community, looking for opportunities in schools, churches & elsewhere to promote awareness that autism is a neurological disorder that affects 1 in every 152 children born, and is increasing at a rate of 10-17% per year.

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  106     December 4, 2007 - 1:10pm | lewiso


Anchorage, AK – December 3, 2007 –The Credit Union National Association (CUNA) awarded Credit Union 1 with second place honors in its 2007 Dora Maxwell Social Responsibility Awards program.

“Credit unions hold firm to their belief in social responsibility and the people-first philosophy they were founded on,” said Dan Mica, president and CEO of CUNA. “The Maxwell, Herring awards program is a chance to honor credit unions that have created and implemented innovative community involvement and financial education programs – as well as an opportunity to share these ideas with the entire credit union movement.”

“I am so proud of the employees’ hard work and dedication to community service,” Credit Union 1’s president and CEO, Leslie Ellis said. “To be recognized at the national level for something that employees are so passionate about and something that is truly part of the credit union’s culture is just fantastic,” said Ellis.

Credit Union 1 was recognized specifically for its “Adopt A Platoon” program. The credit union spent the past year supporting the Alpha Battery, 2nd of the 377th Parachutes Field Artillery Regiment from Fort Richardson. The platoon was serving in Kabala, Iraq. The majority of the platoon returned to Alaska in November. The credit union plans to hold a “welcome home” event for the troops after the holidays.

Ellis will accept the award on behalf of Credit Union 1 at CUNA’s 2008 Governmental Affairs Conference in Washington, D.C. March 2-6, 2008.

About Credit Union 1:

Credit Union 1 is Alaska's second largest financial cooperative, with a mission to help members achieve their financial goals by focusing on excellent service and value. Founded 55 years ago, Credit Union 1 has 13 branches, and over 50,000 members and $500 million in assets. Anyone who lives or works in Alaska is eligible to join Credit Union 1.

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  105     November 28, 2007 - 11:29am | gentilegirl

Rilke Schule, German Immersion Charter School

I would also like to Commend teacher Stephanie Campbell acting principal, (while Principal is away) and the entire staff of teachers, volunteers and administration at RILKE SCHULE for their care and concern for the children's safety this morning.

While being a new school, Rilke Schule overcame those challenges today as Stephanie Campbell and the staff took the utmost precautions to make sure everyone in and around the building was safe and informed. RilkeSchule is temporarily located at CHANGE POINT on Raspberry Road.

Amanda G.

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  104     November 26, 2007 - 2:03pm | cbingham

Ground broken on SEARHC patient housing project in Sitka

A decade-old dream came closer to reality on Friday, Nov. 16, when the SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) broke ground on a new $3.45 million patient housing facility across from the SEARHC Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital in Sitka.

The 7,820-square-foot facility will have 18 rooms, including two that are fully compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. The patient housing facility will serve Alaska Native and non-Native patients receiving health care services in Sitka, including care received at non-SEARHC facilities. The facility will be Medicaid-eligible and will offer affordable lodging rates for uninsured patients.

“This has been in the ‘dream’ stages for a long time,” said Frank Sutton, SEARHC Vice President of Hospital Services. “I remember sitting at my desk with one of my assistants sketching out what a patient housing facility on the Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital campus might look like about 10 years ago.”

SEARHC operates community health centers in several rural Southeast Alaska communities, and many of these patients are brought to Sitka’s Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital for advanced health care services not available in their villages. Many of these medical procedures require little or no hospitalization, so patients need a place to stay while they await their trip home or so patients have time to heal so they can become physically able to travel.

SEARHC has some patient housing on its Sitka campus (Mt. Edgecumbe Arms), but has to contract with the Sitka Hotel and Shee Atika Corp. (Totem Square Inn) for overflow patient housing needs. Some SEARHC beneficiaries refuse or postpone travel for needed health services because of the lack of adequate or affordable housing in Sitka. The new facility also will help SEARHC be able to handle the growing elderly population in the region, which is expected to rise considerably over the next 20 years.

New SEARHC President/CEO Roald Helgesen said the new patient housing facility will provide safe, accessible housing for patients waiting for surgery, patients waiting for the start of a substance abuse treatment program, pregnant women women awaiting the birth of a child, and families of patients in critical care.

“As a first act, I’m very excited to turn a shovel for this project,” said Helgesen, who also spoke about the partnerships that made this project a reality. Helgesen was joined on the shovel brigade by Sitka Tribe of Alaska Chairman Woody Widmark (who also represented the SEARHC Board of Directors), Sitka Mayor Marko Dapcevich, Rob Allen of the Rasmuson Foundation and Chad McGraw of McGraw’s Custom Construction in Sitka, which received a $2.4 million contract to build the facility.

The total cost of the project is about $3.45 million, with funding coming from the Denali Commission ($1.7 million), the Rasmuson Foundation ($750,000), the Paul G. Allen Foundation ($275,000), Tlingít-Haida Regional Housing Authority ($80,000), the U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development ($50,000), and SEARHC ($568,000).

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