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Southcentral Foundation's 16th Annual Gathering

What: Southcentral Foundation's 16th Annual Gathering

When: Saturday, March 30

When: 10:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.

Where: Dena'ina Civic and Convention Center

This year's Gathering is right around the corner! Join us for Southcentral Foundation (SCF) information booths, booths by other organizations in the Anchorage community and Alaska Native artists!

Activities throughout the day will include live entertainment, face painting, SCF Health Education's Inflatable Colon, a welcome by SCF President/CEO Katherine Gottlieb, prize drawings and much more!

Posted on 2013-03-06 by Southcentral Foundation

Career Counseling Event

Getting the Job – Seeking SuccessCareer Counseling Event We can help provide the tools! Monday, November 5, 2012; 9:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.BP Energy CenterFree of Charge The Anchorage Chapter for Society of Human Resource Management (ASHRM) will be hosting a career counseling/job seeking workshop during the morning hours of November 5, 2012. More than 12 Human Resource Professionals representing multiple industries will be available to serve as ‘Advisors’ to participants of this workshop. These HR professionals are the best of the best in Anchorage and will offer participants advice and insight regarding resume preparation, interviewing skills and industry specific careers. Participants will meet one-on-one with an ‘Advisor’ as well as receive a variety of educational material regarding finding and securing an ideal career. While this is NOT a job fair, participants are encouraged to bring a copy of their resume so the ‘Advisor’ can offer his/her suggestions for improvement! In addition, participants may bring a recruitment bulletin and/or job description of their ‘ideal job’ so the ‘Advisor’ can offer specific assistance to help secure and interview for the position.

Posted on 2012-10-25 by Bering Straits Native Corporation

ANCSA milestone coming up

Tim Bradner - Associated Press
Economy

Alaska's Native corporations, now part of the foundation for the state's economy, will turn 40 soon. It's certainly a thing to celebrate, though it's a sobering milestone for me.

I wrote extensively about the land claims movement as a young pup reporter for the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner and the Tundra Times, a weekly Alaska Native newspaper. The 40th anniversary is a happy milestone but it reminds me of my age.

The Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act, or ANCSA, was passed by Congress and signed by President Richard Nixon on Dec. 18, 1971. The regional and village corporations conceived by ANCSA were formed in 1972.

It goes without saying that the corporations have now become hugely important for the state. They represent a large pool of Alaska-owned investment capital, and the owners prefer to invest in Alaska when they can, in businesses, property and, most important, in major resource development projects.

They are among the state's largest employers and own drilling and oil field service, engineering and construction companies. They own out-of-state businesses, particularly in government services, which bring millions of dollars of profits back home to Alaska.

The corporations own more than 45 million acres across the state and as large private landowners they hustle for development of resources on their land. Had it not been for the claims act, we would not now have the Red Dog Mine in Northwest Alaska, one of the world's largest zinc mines, which is owned by NANA Regional Corp. Nor would we have the Donlin Creek gold project, which will be one of the world's largest gold mines when it is developed. Donlin Creek was discovered by geologists working for Calista Corp. and is on land owned by that regional corporation and TKC Corp., a consortium of local villages.

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Arctic Slope Regional Corp. and Cook Inlet Region Inc. are petroleum producers and work diligently to encourage new exploration and production from their land on the North Slope and in Southcentral Alaska with petroleum potential. In Southeast, Sealaska Corp. and several village corporations are active in the timber business.

As for the 40th birthday, an ad hoc committee is now organizing a series of workshops and forums to be held around the state next year. I occasionally volunteer to help this committee. The goal of these sessions will be to help Alaskans, and particularly a younger generation of Alaska Natives, to understand what the claims act and the corporations are all about. As the years go by, it's easy to forget what a remarkable achievement it was.


PUBLIC LAND IS PRIVATE

Fundamentally, the claims act was to resolve legal issues raised by claims of land rights by Alaska Native people. Congress had recognized the validity of the claims but Congress itself had to resolve them. Had that not happened there would have been lawsuits by the dozen and a big cloud would have descended over title to a lot of Alaska land. It was because the land status was clarified by 1971 by ANCSA that we got the trans-Alaska pipeline built and oil production from the North Slope by 1977, as one example.

I'm not certain it was intended by those who drafted the ANCSA legislation, but the bill was also a brilliant economic development instrument, although most Alaskans didn't appreciate it at the time.

The significance of having more than 45 million acres of federally owned land pass to private landowners who would move promptly to get some development going was not clearly understood in Alaska in the 1960s.

It also wasn't understood how the ANCSA corporations would come to economically reinforce the state's urban communities through investments in businesses and real estate. Look around at all the new commercial buildings in Anchorage, including the large retail Tikahtnu Commons shopping center, and who the owners are.

None of us expected that the corporations would expand out of state, not only in expansions of their Alaska-based firms but also in the new field of government contracting.


LITTLE RURAL DEVELOPMENT

It's not all peaches and cream. Some corporations did better than others. Some skirted failure but most recovered.

One area where ANCSA somewhat failed to meet expectations is in rural development, except where mines can be developed. Many shareholders work in businesses owned by the corporations but many of these jobs require moving into cities.

That there has been little development in rural areas just reflects, sadly, that there are limited opportunities except for mining and, in some coastal areas, fisheries. In terms of fisheries, the nonprofit Community Development Quota groups, which are not ANCSA corporations and which were formed separately, are fostering some local development with earnings from offshore fishing royalties, but these investments are required by law.

To what extent the ANCSA corporations can become engaged in a broader rural development initiative to help secure the fragile economies of small rural villages is for them to decide. They are not social service entities.

The private corporation structure was one of the innovative parts of ANCSA that is still somewhat controversial within the Native community. Recognizing the limitations of this model, however, several of the corporations have established nonprofit arms. Numerous tribal entities have also been formed to work in areas that may not be appropriate for private corporations seeking to maximize profits.

It's fascinating to consider the rich tapestry that has developed from this one federal action four decades ago, many parts completely unexpected. Alaska is much richer because of it, in many ways beyond money.

 

Posted on 2010-08-31 by Ben Goenett

Hawaii to help Alaska with foster care

The Associated Press 
HONOLULU — Hawaii is beginning to help Alaska and its tribal organizations reduce the number of Native Alaskan children in foster care.

The Hawaii Department of Human Services was asked by the federally funded Western Pacific Implementation Center to assist Alaska in developing a computer system that weighs risk and safety factors to determine what actions to take when investigating reports of child abuse.

Responses include offering voluntary family strengthening services and immediately placing children in protective care.

Before Hawaii launched the system in 2005, Native Hawaiians were more than twice as likely to be removed from their families.

Human Services Director Lillian Koller says that disparity has been eliminated since the system was implemented.

 

Posted on 2010-08-04 by Ben Goenett

Calista buys Yukon Equipment Inc.

By ALASKA NEWSPAPERS - Associated Press

Calista Corp. continued expanding into construction with the purchase of Yukon Equipment Inc., a news release said on Tuesday. Founded in 1945, Yukon Equipment is the oldest Alaskan-owned heavy equipment dealer in the state and specializes in new and used construction equipment, sales, repairs, rentals, parts and service.

The acquisition adds to the construction capacity of Calista's subsidiaries of Brice Inc. and Tunista Construction Inc. The purchase of Brice was announced last week.

"We are happy to partner with such a well-established organization and believe this relationship will benefit our clients and Calista's shareholders," said Morry Hollowell, Yukon Equipment president.

"The Calista-Yukon connection is a natural one which will lower clients costs and improve overall services; as well as provide additional job opportunities and a new revenue stream for Calista shareholders," said Matthew Nicolai, Calista president and CEO.

Yukon Equipment has provided equipment for construction of the Alaska Highway, the trans-Alaska oil pipeline, the Distant Early Warning line and heavy equipment such as street sweepers, snowplows and runway brooms for state and municipal agencies. It has dedicated services for utility and underground equipment used by companies such as Enstar Gas. Yukon has headquarters in Anchorage and a branch office in Fairbanks. Yukon Equipment Inc. managers will remain in place and continue to provide customers with superior heavy equipment service.

 

Posted on 2010-08-03 by Ben Goenett

$67 million granted for Native job training

Published on June 30th, 2010
By ALASKA NEWSPAPERS STAFF

Approximately $67 million in grant funds will be awarded to 256 organizations through the Workforce Investment Act Indian and Native American Program, a news release said. These grants will support job training and placement services for adults and at-risk youths.

"Funding awarded through this competition will support American Indian, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian communities in both the development of their local economies and the preparation of workers to meet the needs of promising regional industries," said U.S. Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis. "The training and employment services made available through these grants will expand opportunities for adults and at-risk youth in these communities and will help them gain access to the kind of good jobs that offer opportunities for advancement."

Of the $67 million, approximately $53 million is being awarded to 178 organizations through the department's Employment and Training Administration's Comprehensive Service Program for Adults. This program provides quality employment and training services specifically for Native Americans ages 14 and older who are unemployed, underemployed and low-income individuals.

An approximately $14 million grant will be shared among an additional 78 organizations through ETA's Supplemental Services Program for Youth. The youth program will offer summer and year-round employment and training activities for American Indian, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian youth between the ages of 14 and 21. This program provides an array of employment and training services including job placement assistance, work experience and occupational skills training, specifically targeting at-risk individuals facing substantial employment barriers. The targeted population includes high school dropouts and youth who are in need of basic skills training.

The Workforce Investment Act of 1998 authorizes programs to serve the employment and training needs of Indian and Native American adults and youths through competitive two-year grant awards. Final award amounts in each category were determined, in part, by census data. Read the complete list of grantees at http://wdr.doleta.gov/directives/attach/TEGL/TEGL32-09.pdf.

Posted on 2010-07-28 by Ben Goenett

Central council receives over $2M in state grant funds

Juneau Empire - Associated Press

The Central Council Tlingit & Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska has received a $2,461,905 Native Family Assistance Program grant from the State of Alaska Department of Health & Social Services, Division of Public Assistance. The grant is in year four of a five year grant cycle, and will fund services offered July 1 through June 30, 2011.

"These funds will allow us to provide eligible families with a much needed financial boost so that they can better meet the needs of their children, said Alberta Aspen, Director of Central Council's Employment & Training Division, in a press release. "Central Council remains committed to providing services to its tribal citizens so they can maintain a healthy lifestyle independent of program services."

The NFAP grant will supplement federal Temporary Assistance to Needy Families funding to operate the Tribe's TANF program, which provides financial assistance, eligibility services, case management and other welfare-to-work services, support services, child care assistance and administrative support to all eligible families living in the Tribe's service area.

"I am pleased that we can continue our relationship with the State of Alaska in providing a safety net of services to our needy tribal citizens," said Central Council President Edward K. Thomas, in a press release.

http://www.juneauempire.com/stories/072610/reg_683633789.shtml

 

Posted on 2010-07-26 by Ben Goenett

VPSO Program receives funding

Juneau Empire - Associated Press

The Central Council Tlingit & Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska announced the Village Public Safety Officer Program has been funded for fiscal year 2011 in the amount of $679,909 from the State of Alaska Department of Public Safety.

This is an increase of $211,707 from last year. The program runs July 1 through June 30, 2011 and provides rural Alaskan communities with needed public safety services and basic law enforcement at the local level.

Communities currently working with Central Council include Angoon, Hydaburg, Kake, Pelican and Thorne Bay. During these past months, four positions were filled putting two VPSOs in Kake, one in Hydaburg, and one in Pelican.

The VPSO Program was designed to train and employ individuals residing in the village as first responders to public safety emergencies such as search and rescue, fire protection, emergency medical assistance, crime prevention and basic law enforcement. The presence of these officers has had a significant impact on improving the quality of life in participating villages.

The Community Services & Self-Governance Division's VPSO Coordinator works closely with the local Mayor and City Council as well as with the Alaska State Troopers to administer this program in designated Southeast communities.

"We at Central Council have worked diligently with the State of Alaska and our rural communities to reestablish this vital program," said VPSO Coordinator Jason Wilson. "We look forward to continuing our partnership with the communities and expanding the VPSO Program to as many rural communities as possible."

Central Council is partnering with Tlingit-Haida Regional Housing Authority in providing housing for VPSO positions where possible. THRHA has listed the VPSO position as essential for the communities. We are excited about the VPSO Program expanding, working with the local city councils, and strengthening our relationship with THRHA.

http://www.juneauempire.com/stories/072610/reg_683633757.shtml

 

Posted on 2010-07-26 by Ben Goenett

NANA, Lockheed Martin to jointly seek contract

The Associated Press

ANCHORAGE – NANA Development Corp. says it’s partnering with Lockheed Martin to compete for the U.S. Missile Defense Agency’s ground-based missile defense system contract.

Lockheed Martin announced in June it would seek the contract now held by Boeing.

The system is designed to defend against intermediate- and long-range ballistic missiles, and is a main component of the nation’s overall missile defense system.

Interceptor missiles are stationed at Fort Greely, about 100 miles south of Fairbanks, and Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.

NANA says two of its subsidiaries would provide logistics management, engineering and supply support services at Fort Greely and in Huntsville, Ala.

Posted on 2010-07-23 by Ben Goenett

CIRI bounces back, looks ahead

PROFITS: Except for a lag in tourism, corporation strong.

By ELIZABETH BLUEMINK - Associated Press

Cook Inlet Region Inc. surged back to profitability last year after getting bit hard by the national recession.

The Anchorage Native corporation reaped a $24.5 million profit in 2009 after suffering a $22.8 million loss in 2008, due mainly to investments soured by that year's stock market implosion, according to its new annual financial report.

Last year, the stock market bounced back and CIRI saw growth in its investments and most of its businesses.

The company's bugaboo was its tourism business in Alaska and the Lower 48. The national economy has remained slow, with chronic job losses and stagnation. Tourists were traveling shorter distances and spending much less on their trips. That hurt CIRI's Alaska tour operations and lodges as well as its Lower 48 hotel and resort properties.

Tourism was the only part of CIRI struck by shrinking revenue last year.

CIRI's other businesses include its $100 million massive retail complex in Northeast Anchorage, Tikahtnu Commons, which is filling up with big-box stores and, recently, a new Regal Cinemas theater. The company also owns firms that specialize in construction, oil field work and government contracting. CIRI also invests in real estate and telecommunications.

TOURISM LOSSES

Despite its overall profit, CIRI lost nearly $4.9 million in its tourism and hospitality business sector last year.

The Native firm owns hotels and day-tour boats in Alaska, as well as properties in the Lower 48. CIRI says its Alaska tourism operations cut expenses to cope with fewer visitors. For example, the company didn't deploy Kenai Fjords tour boats until they were fully booked. It shut down part of its upscale Talkeetna lodge.

"We were definitely down significantly from the previous year (2008), which was a record year," Jim Jager, CIRI spokesman, said of the company's tourism arm.

"We attribute (that) to the down economy and reduction in Alaska visitors," he said.

CIRI believes that Alaska tourism remains a good investment, even though the cruise industry -- the source of most of Alaska's tourists -- has been cutting the number of ships it brings to the state.

With fewer ships, "we've refocused a lot more effort to marketing to independent travelers," Jager said.

He says the company is already seeing some improvement in tourism sales this year. "It's still a down year but we are doing better than anticipated," he said.

HARNESSING ENERGY

CIRI's annual report to shareholders shows that the company is sitting on a large amount of cash, stocks and bonds: about $182 million as of Dec. 31.

"We're very liquid right now and we are actively looking to invest some of that money," Jager said.

An example of CIRI putting its stockpiled cash into new investments was its purchase of Idaho-based environmental remediation company North Wind Inc. at the end of last year. North Wind has 19 offices and 500 employees nationwide. The purchase price was $30 million, with CIRI paying about $12 million up front, according to the new annual report.

CIRI is also building a 40,000-square-foot office building in South Anchorage, near C Street and Klatt Road. The building has already been fully leased to Doyon Limited, a Fairbanks-based Native corporation.

Investing in energy production for Southcentral is another high priority. It plans to begin building a 54-megawatt wind turbine farm on Fire Island next year, expected to power 18,000 homes. CIRI is seeking construction bids for the wind farm and hopes to begin construction next year, Jager said.

In addition, the Native firm is exploring the possibility of creating synthetic natural gas using its underground coal deposits on its land in the Beluga area. The company is drilling test holes on its land, and another round of testing will come in the fall.

Both projects will cost millions -- last year, CIRI estimated constructing the wind farm would cost $165 million. CIRI, for now, is the major company backing them.

"CIRI has not gotten to the serious spending yet," Jager said.

Read more: http://www.adn.com/2010/07/10/1361760/ciri-bounces-back-looks-ahead.html#ixzz0tWdk6x4f

Posted on 2010-07-12 by Ben Goenett

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