Movers & Shakers for Oct. 16, 2022

Award-winning presenter Shawn Spruce (Laguna Pueblo) has joined Koahnic Broadcast Corporation, a nonprofit, Alaska Native governed media center, as the new permanent host of Native America Calling (NAC). The live and nationally syndicated radio program produces thoughtful conversations from a Native perspective about issues that affect Native people.

Spruce was a frequent guest for many years on Native America Calling, and comes from a financial education and economic development background. He was awarded the 2021 Ketchum Prize for outstanding contributions to financial education and inclusion for Native Americans.

Sol Traverso (Athabascan and Puerto Rican descent) joins NAC as associate producer. Originally from Alaska, Traverso is a University of New Mexico journalism graduate with three years of experience that includes the UNM Daily Lobo, the New Mexico News Port, The Taos News and NAC.

Andi Murphy (Diné) has been promoted to senior producer for NAC. Murphy has more than decade of journalism experience including eight years with NAC. She specializes in Indigenous multimedia storytelling, production, and research and is a frequent fill-in host for NAC. Her popular “Toasted Sister Podcast” covers Indigenous cooking and food sovereignty. She is a two-time first place winner of the National Native Media Award for general excellence in podcasting and radio.

The Nature Conservancy has named Ivy Spohnholz as its next Alaska state director. Spohnholz also currently serves as a Democratic representative in the Alaska State Legislature.

“I am thrilled to be joining the team at The Nature Conservancy,” Spohnholz said. “In Alaska, with our rich resources and a way of life that’s second to none, TNC’s work is both practical and essential. Alaska needs more jobs and lower cost energy that is both sustainable and predictable — especially in the rural and coastal communities that define us. We need to make big progress on adapting to and slowing climate change. There is no organization better positioned to help formulate the breakthroughs we need than The Nature Conservancy.”

Prior to her service in the Legislature, Spohnholz’s career included 20 years in roles with organizations such as The Salvation Army, University of Alaska Anchorage, Alaska Conservation Foundation and Abused Women’s Aid in Crisis.

Spohnholz holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and a master’s degree in public administration, both from the University of Washington. She has been a foster and adoptive parent and is the past chair of the board of directors for the Alaska Children’s Trust.

The Voice of the Arctic Iñupiat is pleased to announce that Nagruk Harcharek will serve as the organization’s president. The Voice Executive Committee vote on his selection was unanimous.

Formerly the Ukpeaġvik Iñupiat Corporation vice president of private equity and arctic development, Harcharek will work with the Voice’s 24 member organizations to advance the organization’s four major goals, which are: Addressing and participating in legislation, regulations and government programs to protect Iñupiat culture, increasing communication and information-sharing amongst organizations of the North Slope, ensuring the development of North Slope natural resources in a safe and responsible manner, and promoting Iñupiat stewardship of the North Slope and stimulate the North Slope economy.

“There is so much opportunity for us on the North Slope, and to help realize that opportunity is something I am looking forward to taking on. I am ready to jump in with the Board and Executive Committee to start tackling issues head on,” said Harcharek on his new role. “I am humbled by the Board and Executive Committee’s confidence in me and by the support I’ve al ready received from across the North Slope.”

The ACLU of Alaska has hired longtime Alaska litigator Ruth Botstein to lead the organization’s legal department. She joins the team with more than 20 years of complex civil litigation in state and federal courts and will officially take the helm on Oct. 17.

Botstein’s career has been dedicated to Alaskans, of whom she has fought for in front of the United States Supreme Court twice. She’s worked in private practice at Feldman & Orlansky, served as an Assistant Attorney General and Senior Assistant Attorney General for the State of Alaska, and worked as an Assistant Municipal Attorney for the Municipality of Anchorage.

“I’m very excited to have this opportunity to help preserve and protect the civil rights and freedoms of all Alaskans. I believe the ACLU of Alaska has a crucial role to play in protecting our constitutional rights and holding our governments accountable, and it’s an honor and a privilege to join a group so dedicated to this work,” Botstein said.

Botstein attended Oberlin College and Stanford Law School. She moved to Alaska in 1998 to clerk on the Alaska Supreme Court for Hon. Dana Fabe.

Two leaders with Bettisworth North Architects and Planners have been awarded high honors within their respective practice areas. Leah Boltz, principal, has been named a Fellow by the Society for Marketing Professional Services (SMPS). Dana Nunn, director of interior design, has been inducted into the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) College of Fellows. Boltz and Nunn work in Bettisworth North’s Anchorage office and work on projects across the state.

Boltz leads marketing and business development for Bettisworth North and became a firm principal in 2020. Boltz has been active in SMPS for more than 10 years, serving as president of the Alaska chapter, sitting on numerous committees, and acting as chapter liaison to SMPS national. Boltz earned her Certified Professional Services Marketer (CPSM) designation from SMPS in 2014. Boltz guides Bettisworth North’s support of Alaska nonprofits and small businesses by providing counsel on capital projects to expand or enhance service offerings. Boltz is also the co-founder of Parks For All, an initiative to bring inclusive play to Alaskans of all abilities. She was named to the Alaska Journal of Commerce Top Forty Under 40 in 2014.

Director of interior design Nunn is a 20-year professional who manages a staff of eight for all the firm’s projects. Her work centers on commercial design for health care, education, civic, and arts and culture facilities. Nunn has been active in ASID’s Alaska chapter since 2003, with roles including two terms as president, finance director, and chair of multiple committees. She has served on the national organization’s Advocate by Design Council since 2018 and volunteers for the Center for Interior Design Accreditation. Nunn also co-chairs ASID’s IMPACT committee and ASID Alaska chapter’s government affairs committee, developing and securing support for reasonable regulation of professional interior design. The focus is on legislation recognizing the impact of interior design on public health, safety, and welfare, and establishing professional registration for qualified interior designers in Alaska.

Updated: 
10/12/2022 - 1:58pm