Alysha Guthrie on 2013 Elders & Youth Conference

Sealaska shareholder Alysha Guthrie (Tlingit, Eagle, Kaagwaantaan) was selected to serve as the Sealaska board youth advisor for 2013-2014 and in that role attended the Elders & Youth Conference. The Sealaska board is committed to providing mentorship in the boardroom to younger shareholders.

Alysha Guthrie 2013-2014 Sealaska Youth Advisor

Through the experience, the board youth advisor will develop leadership skills and a better understanding of Sealaska operations. We asked Alysha to comment on her experience at the Elders & Youth Conference.Sealaska shareholder Alysha Guthrie (Tlingit, Eagle, Kaagwaantaan) was selected to serve as the Sealaska board youth advisor for 2013-2014 and in that role attended the Elders & Youth Conference. The Sealaska board is committed to providing mentorship in the boardroom to younger shareholders. Through the experience, the board youth advisor will develop leadership skills and a better understanding of Sealaska operations. We asked Alysha to comment on her experience at the Elders & Youth Conference.

Sealaska shareholder Alysha Guthrie (Tlingit, Eagle, Kaagwaantaan) was selected to serve as the Sealaska board youth advisor for 2013-2014 and in that role attended the Elders & Youth Conference. The Sealaska board is committed to providing mentorship in the boardroom to younger shareholders. Through the experience, the board youth advisor will develop leadership skills and a better understanding of Sealaska operations. We asked Alysha to comment on her experience at the Elders & Youth Conference.

Alysha Guthrie 
It’s always an honor to be a part of something that brings our people together. I was excited to attend the Elders & Youth Conference in Fairbanks, Alaska and it was not disappointing. I left both encouraged and inspired not only from the Elders who spoke, but also by the youth who were there representing themselves and their culture.

There are two moments in particular that have stayed with me. During one session, everyone in the room felt the urgency and sincerity of an Elder as he encouraged the youth to talk to their Elders about issues in their communities. It was the voice of longing to be a resource and pass down cultural knowledge to preserve their way of life.

The other moment that has stayed with me is more of an experience. There was a theme playing throughout the conference that spoke of the importance of the Native vote: we have a voice, we should make it heard. There was a Rock the Native Vote concert, which was highly attended and very inspiring. The hosts of the concert were incredibly passionate about voting; I believe many young people were inspired to make their vote count. Many young people were motivated to speak up for what matters to them in their communities. There was a sense of togetherness and connectedness across the communities represented as they repeated, “I will vote!” The overall message: We are Alaska Native and our vote counts.

Attending this statewide conference as the board youth advisor for Sealaska was a new experience. I had the opportunity to talk with some youth from other regions and share my personal experience with being involved with my regional corporation on this level. As I told them, I would highly encourage anyone who is eligible to apply for this position to do so. Not only has it been beneficial as a learning experience on a business level, it has been tremendously empowering to work with the incredible leaders we have on the board. The behind-the-scenes look on how decisions are made that affect our shareholders, our people, has been the most rewarding part of my role yet. With some of the changes that Sealaska is making the next year in the boardroom will be a very exciting and positive experience.

Contact Sealaska through corpsec@sealaska.com to get more information and an application for the board youth advisor.

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