The US Small Business Administration exists to assist small business growth and development through loan guarantees, contracts, counseling sessions, and other initiatives. One of those is the 8(a) Business Development Program, which helps “small, disadvantaged businesses compete in the marketplace,” in large part through sole-source contracts.
Alaska Native Corporations formed under the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA) contribute a vast amount and diverse array of economic stability to the state’s $50 billion-plus GDP.
BBNC’s mission statement is “Enriching our Native way of life,” and Metrokin says it is accomplished through a number of ways. BBNC has followed a goal of paying 35 percent of its net income to shareholders in the form of dividends. Its first dividend paid to shareholders was $0.25 a share in 1978, and in the current fiscal year BBNC anticipates paying $32.40 a share, most recently averaging $17 million in shareholders dividends annually.
When Irene Sparks Rowan stepped off a plane in Bethel she carried a white umbrella and wore white boots, a white hat, and a pink raincoat. She was there to start her first job as a teacher at the high school. “I dressed as I had in college,” she says.
“We’re a very rural state. Other than the Anchorage area, the rest of the state is rural, and it has so many unique perspectives in all parts of Alaska. Large or small, the communities are all in special places and are special to the people that live there.
He is an Alaskan leader that few know. His name is James (Jimmy) Stotts. An Iñupiat from Barrow, he is the president of Inuit Circumpolar Council (ICC) Alaska. For several decades he has worked out of the limelight advocating for his people, trying to focus state, national, and international attention on issues, such as food security, that are of concern to the Inuit.
Do not confuse Alaska Native art with cheap, imitation “Native art” made overseas and sold in gift shops catering to tourists. Today’s contemporary Alaska Native artists create original and stunning art, equal in creativity to anything found in art centers such as New York or London.
In 1971, ANCSA (Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act) was ratified to resolve long-standing indigenous land claims and to nurture economic development for Alaska Natives with the creation of the Alaska Native Corporation. The Act created more than two hundred village corporations and twelve regional corporations within Alaska.
Alaska Native Corporations have become powerhouses of our state’s economy, generating billions of dollars and providing thousands of jobs for Alaskans. In 2013, according to the ANCSA CEO Association, Alaska Native Corporations accounted for more than 70 percent of the total revenue of the top 49 Alaskan-owned companies.