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Governor Parnell Announces Board Appointments November 5, 2013


November 4, 2013, Juneau, Alaska - Governor Sean Parnell today announced appointments to the Alaska Mental Health Board, Alaska Commission on Aging, Alaska Native Language Preservation and Advisory Council, Education Commission of the States, and Alaska Juvenile Justice Advisory Committee.

Alaska Mental Health Board

Governor Parnell appointed Charlene Tautfest to the Alaska Mental Health Board. The board serves as the state planning, coordinating, and advocacy body for federal and state laws relating to mental health services for Alaskans with mental disorders. The board also prepares a comprehensive plan of treatment and rehabilitation services, and an annual implementation plan.

Tautfest, of Soldotna, is appointed to serve as a parent of a child with a severe mental health disorder. Tautfest is a stay-at-home mom who is active in her community. She has served as a medical coder for Peninsula Community Health Service, volunteer for the Soldotna School District, and former secretary for the Redoubt Parent Teacher Association.

Alaska Commission on Aging

Governor Parnell appointed Rachel Greenberg and Rolf W. Numme to the Alaska Commission on Aging. The commission makes recommendations to the governor and Legislature regarding legislation, regulations, and appropriations for programs and services that benefit older Alaskans. Members are appointed based on their knowledge of and demonstrated interest in the concerns of Alaska’s seniors.

Greenberg, of Palmer, is the deputy director for the Palmer Senior Citizens Center, DBA, Mat-Su Senior Services, where she has worked for the past 20 years. She is a member of the North Lakes Community Council, Mat-Su Transit Coalition, Mat-Su Senior Services Task Force, and the Mat-Su Trails and Parks Foundation. Greenberg holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from the University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF). She is appointed to the commission as a senior service provider.

Numme, of Wasilla, is a lead instructor at Charter College. He previously worked as an instructor for Wayland Baptist University, and as an eligibility technician and workforce development specialist for the State of Alaska Division of Public Assistance. Numme holds a doctorate in higher education and organizational change from Benedictine University, and master’s degrees in business administration and public administration from the City University of Seattle. He is appointed to a public seat.

Alaska Native Language Preservation and Advisory Council

Governor Parnell reappointed Bernadette Alvanna-Stimpfle and Annette Evans-Smith to the Alaska Native Language Preservation Advisory Council. The council advises both the governor and Legislature on programs, policies, and projects to provide for the preservation, restoration, and revitalization of Alaska Native languages in the state. All of the appointments to the council represent professional language experts.

Alvanna-Stimpfle, of Nome, is the Eskimo Heritage Program Director at Kawerak Inc., and an Inupiaq instructor at the University of Alaska Fairbanks Northwest Campus. She has also worked as an Alaska Native education coordinator and classroom teacher, and as a teaching mentor with the Alaska Statewide Mentoring Project. Alvanna-Stimpfle is also a member of the King Island Drummers and Dance Group and a former member of the King Island Traditional Council. She holds a master’s degree in education and a bachelor’s degree in Inupiaq Eskimo language from UAF.

Evans-Smith, of Anchorage, is the president and CEO of the Alaska Native Heritage Center, where she has worked in several roles since 2003. Under her leadership, the center has initiated a statewide language summit, two pilot language immersion camps, language circles, and a study to identify Alaska Native language programs and learners of Alaska Native languages with the hope of connecting Alaska Native residents in Anchorage to the language programs that exist across Alaska. Her prior work involves service with Southcentral Foundation and The Northern Forum. Evans-Smith holds a bachelor’s degree in international relations from Stanford University and is a trustee with the Western States Arts Federation. She is actively learning the Yup’ik language through her grandmother and, more recently, Denaakk'e (Koyukon Athabascan) from teachers Susan Paskvan, Eliza Jones, and Esther McCarty.

Education Commission of the States

Governor Parnell appointed Deena Paramo to the Education Commission of the States. The commission works to help states develop effective policy and practice for public education by providing data, research, analysis, and leadership, and by facilitating collaboration, exchange of ideas among the states, and long-range strategic thinking.

Paramo, of Wasilla, has been an educator in Alaska since 1991, serving as a teacher, principal, assistant superintendent, and now, superintendent for the Mat-Su Borough School District. Paramo is a member of the American Association of School Administrators, Alaska Association of School Administrators, Foraker Governing Board, Alaska Family Services Board of Directors, and the Mat-Su School Foundation Board of Directors. She holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Texas State University, a master’s degree in public school administration from the University of Alaska Anchorage (UAA), and a doctorate in learning assessment and system performance from the University of Oregon. Paramo is appointed as an at-large member.

Alaska Juvenile Justice Advisory Committee

Governor Parnell appointed Keith Hamilton, Laura Ogan, Linda Moffitt, Emily Waters, Karen Zeman, Bradley Bourdon, Blaine Sharrock, Stormi Backus, and reappointed Beverly Jenkins, Connor Gamache, Michael Jeffery, and Colleen Sullivan-Leonard to the Alaska Juvenile Justice Advisory Committee. The committee assists the juvenile justice department in strengthening and improving the social services and juvenile justice systems at all levels.

Hamilton, of Soldotna, is the president of Alaska Christian College. He graduated from Seattle Pacific University and is the winner of the 2012 Alumni Medallion Award. Hamilton has a doctorate in youth and family culture from Fuller Theological Seminary. He is appointed to serve in a public seat.

Ogan, of Anchorage, is an administrative assistant to the airport manager at Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport. She is currently developing a non-profit organization, “You Choose Project,” which uses music as a platform to encourage youth to abstain from drugs and alcohol. Ogan holds her associate degree in general education from UAA. She was formerly appointed to the Alaska Juvenile Justice Advisory Committee by Governors Palin and Murkowski in 2005 and 2008 as a juvenile member. Ogan is now being appointed to a public seat.

Moffitt, of Anchorage, is retired after 32 years working for the State of Alaska as a juvenile probation supervisor for the Division of Juvenile Justice. She currently volunteers with Reclaiming Futures, Big Brothers Big Sisters, and Anchorage United for Youth. Moffitt has a bachelor’s degree in education and a master’s degree in special education from the University of Alaska. She is appointed to a public seat.

Waters, of Anchorage, has worked as a legal advisor for Anchorage Youth Court, as an associate attorney, and as a political science teacher at UAA. She formerly served in the U.S. Air Force in the Judge General Advocate’s Department as an assistant staff judge advocate, chief of administrative law, and chief of international and operations law. Waters currently volunteers as a court-appointed special advocate for foster care children. She has a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in public policy and a juris doctorate in law from Brigham Young University. Waters also has a bachelor’s degree in economics from UAA. She is appointed to a public seat.

Zeman, of Anchorage, is the executive director for Spirit of Youth. She previously worked as a director with Boys & Girls Club of America in Atlanta, Georgia. Zeman serves on the board of directors for Facing Foster Care in Alaska and is a member of Anchorage United for Youth Plan. She is a former volunteer reader for Start Making a Reader Today and a former member of the National Collaboration for Youth and National Youth Employment Coalitions’ New Leaders Fellow. Zeman holds a bachelor’s degree in English from Portland State University. She is appointed to a public seat.

Bourdon, of Anchorage, graduated from Grace Christian School, where he was president of the National Honor Society, and served as student body vice president and treasurer. Bourdon is co-president and co-chair of the board of directors for Anchorage Youth Court. He also volunteers at Brother Francis Shelter and ChangePoint Church. Bourdon is a Spirit of Youth Award Nominee; recipient of the Ronald Reagan Government Award; recipient of the Spirit of Service Award from Grace Christian School; Golden Gavel Award winner from Anchorage Youth Court; and recipient of the President’s Volunteer Service Award for 100 hours of community service. He is currently studying economics and Spanish at Pepperdine University. Bourdon is appointed to serve on the board as a juvenile under the age of 24.

Sharrock, of Anchorage, is a sophomore at Service High School. He has volunteered for Beans Café and in his spare time works with his family’s construction company. Sharrock has played competitive hockey for the past eight years. He is appointed to serve on the committee as a juvenile under the age of 24.

Backus, of Kenai, is currently working full time and pursuing a degree in business administration at Kenai Peninsula College. She has volunteered more than 250 service hours in the community through leadership classes and her church. Backus is appointed to serve on the committee as a juvenile under the age of 24.

Jenkins, of Anchorage, has been the owner of UPS store #5329 in Anchorage since 2005. She is also the executive director of Empower, a nonprofit organization that teaches employment skills to at-risk youth. Jenkins has 20 years of experience as a federal employee in human resource employment for the National Park Service, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Army, and Air Force. She has also served as a foster parent and has more than 25 years working with foster care. Jenkins is reappointed to a public seat.

Gamache, of Anchorage, is an honor roll graduate of Grace Christian School. He participated in the Boy Scouts of American National Youth Leadership Training, and attended the FBI Youth Leadership Academy in Quantico, Virginia on a national John A. Wagner Jr. Scholarship. Gamache is an active volunteer in the community, working with his church, hunger, and homeless programs. Gamache is reappointed to represent a juvenile under the age of 24.

Jeffery, of Barrow, has been the superior court judge since 1982 and resident in Barrow since 1977. His caseload includes both juvenile delinquency and child welfare cases. With his wife Esther and their three children, he helps out with the family set net salmon fishing sites on Bristol Bay during the summer. Jeffery is currently the court system representative on the steering committee of the Alaska FASD Partnership, and serves on court system committees dealing with children’s issues. He previously served on the Alaska Criminal Justice Assessment Commission, the Advisory Board on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse, and the Statewide Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Steering Committee. Jeffery obtained his bachelor’s degree from Stanford University and his juris doctorate from Yale Law School. He is reappointed to a public seat.

Sullivan-Leonard, of Wasilla, currently serves as deputy mayor of Wasilla and is the owner of CS Leonard & Associates. Sullivan-Leonard formerly served in the Office of Governor Murkowski as the Mat-Su director. She also served for Governors Palin and Parnell in constituent relations, and as the coordinator for the Statehood Celebration Commission. She is a member of the Wasilla Chamber of Commerce, the National Rifle Association, and is a former member of Sunrise Rotary. Sullivan-Leonard is reappointed to a seat reserved for a local elected official.

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