Latest news, alerts, and events.

Aug 6, 2020
Posted Under: COVID

Mission Driven is a good-news series highlighting the many ways in which Alaska’s nonprofit sector is moving forward during the pandemic. Hosted by Foraker President/CEO Laurie Wolf, these recorded chats feature inspiring tales of resilience from nonprofit leaders in our state.


RBI Alaska’s Founder/CEO, Jamar Hill, has had a storied baseball career. These days, he’s finding new ways to teach kids about the sport he loves. His takeaway: kids are resilient

Michele Girault hit the ground running in her first 100-days as Executive Director at Hope Community Resources. Her focus in a distanced environment has revolved around deepening personal connections and maintaining flexible systems.

How are nonprofit leaders gathering and using data to chart their way forward during a pandemic? For Anchorage Concert Association’s Executive Director, Jason Hodges, the process involves sticky notes.

What’s the best way to take care of staff, the children of first responders and each other during a pandemic? For Camp Fire Alaska’s CEO, Barb Dubovich, it comes down to staying connected.

Anchorage Museum’s Director/CEO Julie Decker knows the museum has a role in helping people to imagine tomorrow. Her team has adapted to delivering content in new ways while focusing on the core questions: who are you, and how are you essential to the community?

What are the right tools to pull from your toolbox in a pandemic? Carol Wren and Aleesha Towns-Bain are co-leading the COVID-19 task force at Bristol Bay Native Corporation and Bristol Bay Native Corporation Education Foundation. Through partnerships, collective efforts and even mask-making, they’ve mobilized to serve the shareholders and communities in Bristol Bay.

What is the unit of measure when two businesswomen identify a big problem they believe they can help solve during a pandemic? According to Marilyn Romano, Alaska Regional Vice President of Alaska Airlines and Janet Weiss, president of BP Exploration Alaska Inc, one million jet fuel gallons and travel miles.

There is no word for “coronavirus” in Yupik. For Shane Iverson, General Manager of KYUK, his team is more creative than ever in delivering the news to their Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta listening audience during a pandemic.

Museums Alaska advocates for museums and cultural institutions across our state. Executive Director Della Hall found a way to step up support for Alaska’s museums during a pandemic – and it started with challenging her own assumptions.

Reverend Matt and Reverend Elizabeth Schultz have been innovating with new technology to provide a consistent place of worship for their congregation – many of whom will not physically return to worship until there is a vaccine for COVD-19. Even though the doors are closed, First Presbyterian Church of Anchorage, Alaska is very much open.

As Executive Director of Shiloh Community Housing Inc., Shenee Williams helps to provide quality housing for our city’s homeless population and those in transition. During a pandemic, the work must go on – and doing it in a virtual space has turned out to be a blessing.

The Alaska Black Caucus frames their work around education, justice, economics and healthcare. For President and CEO, Celeste Hodge Growden , getting the word out means keeping the community informed. This crucial work must continue – even if in a virtual space.

The Special Olympics was founded in 1968. Here in Alaska, Special Olympics CEO Sue Perles can attest their nonprofit has remained true to their mission of providing year-round sports training and athletic competition for children and adults of varying abilities. Enter “Virtual Games” – yes, it can happen!

Saving the Salmon. With a pandemic leading to school closures, Tebughna School’s Salmon in the Classroom curriculum for students in Tyonek looked like a wash. How could students raise baby salmon in the classroom when there were no classes? Christy Cincotta, Executive Director of the Tyonek Tribal Conservation District , shares how partners and friends of the community got on board to save the babies (well, baby salmon).

2020 was to be biggest PRIDE celebration the University of Alaska Fairbanks had ever coordinated. But when a week-long (and in person) event with lots of moving parts meets a pandemic, plans must change. According to Jo Malbert Narvaez, Diversity & Inclusion Coordinator at UAF, COVID-19 was no match for Nanook PRIDE. Learn more about UAF LGBTQ PRIDE.

Tuzzy Library at Iḷisaġvik College is both an academic and public library. With the college being closed due to COVID, library director Teressa Williams got creative in prioritizing the safety of her staff and the high demand for literature.