News and Insights

Philanthropy Northwest Diaries: Alaska On My Mind

06/28/2018

Kiran Ahuja | On a recent trip to Anchorage, after engaging with local philanthropic leaders and learning about Alaska’s unique attributes and challenges, it dawned on me the many lessons funders in the lower 48 can glean from Alaska’s philanthropic leaders. In a geographically large state with a small population, funders wear multiple hats and coordinate easily across organizations to address formidable challenges – including homelessness, lack of affordable housing and healthcare services, access to high-quality P-16 education, workforce development and much, much more.

From this recent visit and in my role with Philanthropy Northwest over the past year, I’d like to share my observations about the unique positioning of philanthropy in Alaska. more »

Reflecting on Racial Equity and Civic Engagement

02/11/2016

Gloris Estrella, Program Associate | When the opportunity to join First Alaskans Institute's “Partners for the Next 10,000 Years … A Racial Equity Summit” arose earlier this month, I literally jumped out of my swivel chair with excitement! After gathering 200 people together in a room, all of us passionate about empowering communities and dismantling hundreds of years of oppression, we were bound to walk away with something like a solution, right? Well, not quite. We need to think more about restructuring the current system that is failing so many. More philanthropists should get their hands on the ground, side by side with the communities they so deeply care about. Join the marches, attend town hall meetings, convene your grantees and local businesses around racial tensions they face, write to your local representatives, audit internal policies and ensure they are equitable and inclusive. In an election year, it's even more imperative that philanthropists be at the forefront of the issues we care about. more »

Experimenting and Experiencing: What We Learned at Local Matters: Alaska + Indigenous Communities

11/16/2015

Lyn Hunter, Senior Program Manager | One of our challenges was understanding ourselves how different this gathering would be and then, of course, communicating it. Guided by our board, our Alaska Native and Native American leaders and allies, and our ongoing commitment to community building in Indian Country, we suspected that we were onto something big. What happened exceeded our wildest expectations. Here are the themes we heard from participants, in their own words. more »

Philanthropy Is... Indigenous Ways of Knowing

10/21/2015

Jeff Clarke, CEO | The fourth stop of our Local Matters 2015 series found us in Anchorage, Alaska with leaders from more than 35 organizations, from Bristol Bay to Washington, D.C. For many, it was a life-changing experience. We were welcomed as guests to First Alaskans Institute's 32nd annual Elders and Youth Conference and to the Alaska Federation of Natives — National Congress of American Indians 4th annual Tribal Conference with state and federal policy makers. We were privy to the inner workings of a 10,000-year-old culture as elders passed on their wisdom and traditions to a new generation of Native voices. Despite more than 220 federally recognized tribes in Alaska, each community was honored and rejoiced equally, and spent a week united in both the challenges they share and the opportunities that lie ahead. more »

Why I'm Excited About Local Matters: Alaska + Indigenous Communities

09/08/2015

Lyn Hunter, Senior Program Manager | With "Philanthropy is... Indigenous Ways of Knowing" as our theme, we are stepping beyond our standard programs next month to offer an invitation that echoes our own journey: to listen and experience a very different way of thinking about philanthropy, community and impact. In my nine years at Philanthropy Northwest, I have never been more excited about a program than I am about Local Matters: Alaska + Indigenous Communities next month. Here's why. more »

Guided by Native Values: An Interview with Anthony Mallott, Sealaska CEO

08/06/2015

Anthony Mallott is CEO of Sealaska, a Juneau-based Alaska Native corporation owned by 22,000 Tlingit, Haida and Tsimshian shareholders. In addition to leading Sealaska, he serves on the Rasmuson Foundation board and The Alaska Community Foundation investment committee. He recently spoke with Philanthropy Northwest CEO Jeff Clarke about his work, as part of our ongoing series of interviews with key leaders in philanthropy from across the region and around the nation. more »