Bering Straits

Melanie BahnkeMelanie Bahnke

Kawerak, Inc.

Melanie is the President and CEO of Kawerak, Inc. and has been employed by Kawerak since 1999. In 2012 she was promoted to the President position. She holds a Master of Arts degree in Rural Development from the University of Alaska Fairbanks, and a Bachelor of Education degree in Elementary Education from the University of Alaska Anchorage. Melanie is a tribal member of the Native Village of Savoonga and speaks St. Lawrence Island Yupik as her first language. She is married to Kevin Bahnke, and they have three children.

Melanie is personally vested in working hard to make rural Alaska a positive, nourishing environment where children have opportunities to grow into productive citizens, rooted in the strength of their culture. Her professional goals are to continue to improve the social, economic, cultural, and political conditions in rural Alaska.

Melanie has served on the AFN Board for two years. She states: “I am excited to be part of a group of Alaska Natives who dedicate themselves to strengthening Alaska’s First People and cultures.”

Gail Schubert1Gail Schubert

Bering Straits Native Corporation

Gail “Anagick” Schubert serves as the President and CEO of the Bering Straits Native Corporation (BSNC). She is Treasurer of the AFN Board, Vice Chair of the Akeela Treatment Services Board, Vice Chair of the Alaska Native Justice Center, Vice Chair of the ANCSA Regional Association, and Chair of the Alaska Retirement Management Board. Schubert is the Immediate past chair of the Alaska Native Heritage Center, which she served on for nearly 15 years. She is a member of the Anchorage Chamber of Commerce ATHENA Society, a program that recognizes women’s leadership. She has served on the BSNC Board of Directors since 1992. Schubert is the 2014 recipient of the Northwest Indian Bar Association’s Unsung Hero Award. The annual award honors an attorney for his or her outstanding contributions toward improving the legal and political landscape of Pacific Northwest Indian Country.

Prior to joining BSNC, Schubert practiced law in Anchorage after a successful career on Wall Street, where she worked at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and two Wall Street law firms. She earned an undergraduate degree from Stanford University, a MBA from Cornell University’s Johnson School of Management with an emphasis in accounting and finance, and a JD from the Cornell University School of Law. Schubert was born and raised in Unalakleet, Alaska.

FitzgeraldSteve Ivanoff

Bering Straits Villages

Representing the Bering Straits Villages, Steve Ivanoff serves 20 tribes located in 15 communities. He is a shareholder of St. Michael Native Corporation, Unalakleet Native Corporation, and Bering Straits Native Corporation. Mr. Ivanoff works for the Bering Strait School District as a recreation director and basketball coach; and for Kawerak, Inc., as a transportation planner. He is also a self-employed fisherman participating in the Norton Sound herring, salmon, and crab fisheries.

Currently Mr. Ivanoff serves our community and region under many elected and appointed positions, including: Bering Sea Fishermen’s Association, Bering Straits Native Corporation, Vice-President of the Unalakleet Native Corporation, NSSP Fishery Workgroup, Denali Commission Transportation Committee and Alaska Tribal Transportation Assistance Program workgroup. He also serves on the Governor’s Climate Change Adaption Advisory Group. He is married to Zoe, and has 3 wonderful children, Kelsi, Keoni, and Gage.