Movers and Shakers for May 9
The Central Council of the Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska announced the hire of Courtney Lewis as the child welfare attorney for the Tribe’s new Seattle-based office. As the child welfare attorney, Lewis will provide legal representation to children crime victims with the local courts of jurisdiction within the Washington area, track appellate level Indian Children Welfare Act cases within Washington state and nationwide, and provide effective consultation and legal advice to the Tribe relating to ICWA and child welfare matters. She will also be responsible for preparing and presenting legal arguments in court, and monitoring decisions that may affect tribal families. Tlingit &Haida’s new Seattle-based office had a soft open in late March and is the first office to open outside of Southeast Alaska. The office will be located in the Seattle field office of Casey Family Programs, a foundation focused on influencing long-lasting improvements to the safety and well-being of children, families and communities and a long-standing partner to Tlingit &Haida. Lewis has practiced child welfare law since 2008. She was the first person to be certified in Alaska as a child welfare law specialist by the National Association of Counsel for Children. She also served as the Alaska State Coordinator for NACC from 2019-21.
The Mat-Su Health Foundation hired two new employees: Chelsea Hedrick as Connect Mat-Su community resource specialist and Jeff Winell as R.O.C.K. Mat-Su community engagement coordinator. MSHF has also promoted Jessie Burbank to Connect Mat-Su community resource specialist II. Before accepting her current position, Hedrick held a temporary role coordinating a COVID-19 call line for Connect Mat-Su. She previously worked as a project coordinator with Bozeman Green Build and the Madison River Foundation, as well as an Alaskan Conservation Corp member with the Alaska Department of Natural Resources. She holds an associate of applied sciences in fisheries technology and a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Alaska. Before joining MSHF, Winell worked as a contact center representative at Matanuska Valley Federal Credit Union and program director with Take2 Ministries Alaska. Winell holds a bachelor’s degree in business management and ministry leadership from Cornerstone University in Michigan. Burbank will work closely with the Connect Mat-Su team to develop and maintain a database of health and social services resources within Mat-Su and will engage in outreach to develop and strengthen relationships with social service organizations, providers and programs. Before joining MSHF in 2020, Burbank worked at The Children’s Place where she assisted children and families impacted by child abuse. She graduated from the University of Alaska Anchorage with a Bachelor of Arts in psychology and a minor in women’s studies.
GCI Vice President of Engineering Victor Esposito has been elected to the Society of Cable Telecommunications Engineers board of directors. SCTE, a subsidiary of CableLabs, has been a cable telecommunications leader for more than 50 years and is critical for the advancement of technology, standards and workforce education within the industry.
McKinley Management, LLC announced the promotion of two of the firm’s senior team members. Kenneth P. Lenhart has been named McKinley Management’s chief operating officer. In this role, Lenhart manages the people, process and facilities for all three business units: McKinley Capital Management LLC; McKinley Alaska Private Investment LLC; and McKinley Research Group LLC (formerly McDowell Group). Lenhart joined McKinley Capital in 2011 as a portfolio associate in the firm’s Chicago office. Soon after, he became a member of McKinley Capital’s global quantitative research team, and in 2019 was promoted to director of data science. As director, Lenhart managed the data science team and was responsible for development and management of the firm’s data governance program. In 2020, Lenhart took on heading the firm’s information technology and cybersecurity department. Prior to joining McKinley Capital, Lenhart was a director of equities and quantitative research for Midwest Asset Management Inc., and worked at Deloitte Consulting as a systems analyst providing financial data model and securities expertise. He has 21 years of experience, with 18 in the finance industry. Lenhart received his MBA with concentrations in analytic finance, econometrics, and statistics from the University of Chicago, and his bachelor’s degree in economics from Northwestern University. Joseph Jacobson has been promoted to vice president, private equity of McKinley Alaska Private Investment LLC. Jacobson joined the McKinley team in 2019. In 2021, he was named head of the firm’s private equity team. In this role, Jacobson oversees the Na’-Nuk Investment Fund, L.P. and its investments, and is heavily involved in the firm’s Alaska Cargo and Cold Storage direct infrastructure investment. Jacobson brings nearly 20 years of Alaska business experience, with more than 10 in leadership roles in Alaska’s leading industries. Prior to joining McKinley, Jacobson was a senior consultant with McDowell Group, now McKinley Research Group LLC, a leading Alaska-based general services consulting group specializing in economic impact and feasibility studies for communities and projects around the state. Jacobson received his master’s degree in international relations from City University of New York City College, and his bachelor’s degree in outdoor studies from Alaska Pacific University. Jacobson works from the firm’s Anchorage headquarters.
Coastal Villages Region Fund announced the promotion of Nathaniel Betz to director of Community Programs as well as the hiring of Oscar Evon as director of Regional Affairs. Betz will be responsible for managing operations and budget for economic development programming in 20 Western Alaska villages. This includes leading efforts in project management, employee coaching, data analysis and facility management. Betz has supported multiple programs that help to provide opportunities and enrich the lives of CVRF’s residents including Youth to Work and the Heating Oil program. Born and raised in Kwigillingok, Evon has a deep understanding of the unique challenges in rural Alaska, which will help him meet the needs of CVRF’s residents. Evon served as a board member from 2000-09, eventually becoming board president. He also acted as CVRF’s director of programs. Evon’s previous roles include Tribal Administrator and COVID-19 coordinator for the Native Village of Kwigillingok, office manager for Alaska Moravian Bible Seminary and community outreach coordinator for E3 Alaska.
Doyon Foundation and Doyon Limited announced Tiffany Simmons as the nonprofit organization’s new executive director. Simmons will assume the role, based at the Foundation’s office in Fairbanks, effective May 17. A Doyon, Limited shareholder, Simmons is Central Koyukon Athabascan and was raised in the Yukon River communities of Koyukuk and Galena. Simmons graduated from the Galena City High School and earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Alaska Fairbanks. She has extensive experience working with tribal members and tribal governments in various management and senior leadership positions.