Empowering Southeast Alaskan Communities to reach cultural, ecological and economic prosperity.
August 8th, 2016 
Welcome to The Sustainable Southeast Partnership (SSP) .  We are a diverse network of organizations and individuals working together to meet the challenge of sustainable community development in Southeast Alaska.

It is our collective mission to empower rural Alaskan communities to reach cultural, ecological and economic prosperity.

It has been a busy and beautiful summer here in Southeast Alaska. We have many successes to share from our partners across the region.

Please continue to follow along on facebook , our  website and  blog and subscribe here for future newsletters .

"I have learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel."
-- Maya Angelou

Melanie Kadake Honored for Her Dedication to Salmon, Youth and Community

Written by Alana Peterson
We often find ourselves stating that humans are our most valuable resource, this holds especially true in Southeast Alaska. SSP catalysts are at the center of our network as the key drivers of community priorities and can be instrumental in determining the success (or failure) of a project. Catalysts are tasked with supporting work in their communities in the fields of Energy, Food Security, Forestry and Fisheries Management, and Sustainable Economic Development. Melanie (Minnie) Kadake ranks among the seniority group of Catalysts who have been members of SSP since its inception in 2013. She works as a Catalyst for the community of Hydaburg with Hydaburg Cooperative Association (HCA). 

Minnie's work has primarily focused around stream restoration, youth engagement, and publication of the HCA monthly newsletter. In addition to cultivating youth leadership in her community through science and athletics, Minnie has dedicated herself to learning natural resource technician skills to help her community map, assess and monitor salmon streams that are important to Hydaburg's subsistence and commercial economies.

Minnie has influenced many lives, not only those in her community, but also those of us in the Partnership that have had the fortune to work closely with her. She is resilient and thoughtful, and with her motivation to succeed will certainly be a strong asset to her community as she continues to grow and develop as a leader.

It is with great pride that we recognize Minnie as our SSP Catalyst of the Quarter. She will be leaving to attend college in the fall to further her education in Environmental Sciences and Physical Training. Although she will be greatly missed, we are so happy to have worked alongside her these past years. Good luck Minnie!


Shedding New Light on the Hoonah Native Forest Partnership 
Pioneering technology brings new insight and opportunity to community-based land management

Written by Ian Johnson

The Hoonah Native Forest Partnership (HNFP) is a unique effort at the confluence of land management, collaboration, sustainable resource development, subsistence lifestyle, and cutting-edge data. One particularly pioneering technology is shedding new light on the lands surrounding Hoonah. Researchers collected a highly detailed data-set that illustrates landscape characteristics and forest structure by implementing state-of-the-art Light Imaging, Detection, and Ranging (LiDAR) throughout the study area. The resulting information is providing scientists and land managers a more detailed understanding of a landscape that is critical to the livelihoods and well being of the largest Tlingit community in Alaska.

Learn more about LiDAR and what it means for the community of Hoonah by clicking here.

The Hoonah Native Forest Partnership is combining cutting edge remote sensing data with on-the-ground surveys collected by a local work crew. Phillip Sharclane (pictured) collects stream gradient data on a tributary. This combined data helps inform development decisions to ensure the long-term ecological health of the landscape surrounding Hoonah.
Beating the Odds
Farmers Break New Ground in Southeast Alaska's Rainforest 

Written by Lia Heifetz and Bethany Sonsini Goodrich

A startling 95% of Alaska's food is shipped in from out-of-state. While cultivating Alaskan avocados may remain a pipe-dream, farmers are revealing ample untapped opportunities for growing vegetables and raising livestock locally. If Southeast Alaska alone could replace a mere 1% of imported foods with food cultivated in-state, we could keep a whopping twenty million dollars circulating regionally. In the island-clad rainforest of Southeast Alaska, a growing coalition of farmers are beating the odds, innovating and breaking new ground.

Meet Bobbi Daniels of the Sawmill Farm and Marja Smets and Bo Varsana of Farragut Farm. All three farmers are finding creative ways to beat the odds and bring fresh produce and meat to Southeast Alaskan communities.

Get the full scoop by reading the article we produced with Edible Alaska magazine by clicking here. 


Bobbi Daniels holds a tray of grocery store waste from Seamart Grocery and spent grains from Baranof Island Brewing Company that she is about to feed to her chickens. The Sawmill Farm is turning Sitka's outcast foodwaste into locally grown poultry, rabbits, goats and eventually-pigs. Daniels was the recipient of the 2015 Path to Prosperity sustainable business plan competition award (see below).

Building Business Ingenuity Across Southeast
The Third Annual Path to Prosperity Competition and Business Bootcamp

Written by Alana Peterson

Entrepreneurs and small businesses can support a strong local economy. In rural regions such as Southeast Alaska, many of the challenges to building healthy communities can be faced when there is a strong economic base. Instead of looking outwards for a solution to our fiscal challenges, we look inwards to the people who already live and work in our communities. Tapping into local entrepreneurial talent is key to making our region resilient.

Partner organizations of SSP continue to support business ingenuity and leadership across our region. The Path to Prosperity Competition (P2P) announced their 12 promising finalists for 2016. P2P is a partnership between Haa AanĂ­ CDFI and The Nature Conservancy. The contest targets Southeast Alaska residents with ideas for triple bottom line oriented businesses; those that will have a positive economic, social, and environmental impact on their communities. Over three competition cycles, the program has received applications from more than 105 businesses and start-ups from across Southeast Alaska, and has provided intensive business training to 36 entrepreneurs during the signature business boot camp weekend in Juneau.

Additionally, the Haa Aani Team in partnership with Central Council Tlingit & Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska spent three days on Prince of Wales Island in July leading a Business 101 Workshop. The 15 participating entrepreneurs ranged from artists to boat builders, and each had a desire to either improve an existing business or make their business idea a reality. They worked diligently to learn new concepts, focus their businesses, expand their networks, and develop clear plans for moving forward.


Energy Efficiency Rockstars 
Hoonah takes key energy-saving measures 

Written by Shaina Kilcoyne

In a Southeast community that pays $0.55 per kilowatt-hour, every watt matters.  Last summer, the Sustainable Southeast Partnership and REAP worked with the USDA and Southeast Conference to offer energy audits to commercial buildings in rural Southeast Alaska.  The City of Hoonah and multiple private businesses jumped at the opportunity to find out how they could save energy and money on their utility bills.

Since then, the City of Hoonah has upgraded their lighting to efficient LEDs in the pool and gymnasium, and just last week commenced work upgrading on the 39 harbor lights to LEDs.  "I like to get things done! This just makes sense and is easy as changing a light bulb," said Dennis Gray, Hoonah City Administrator.

An energy audit is just one step in implementing energy projects.  It takes an energy champion in the community to follow through and execute the project.  Mayor Ken Skafflestad in Hoonah fully supported the lighting retrofits, and Mr. Gray swiftly carried out the task.  

The pool and gym upgrades will pay for themselves in the first year, and save over $61,000 over the next five years alone.  The harbor light conversion is expected to save over $16,000 annually.

REAP and the Sustainable Southeast Partnership are honored to work with these proactive Alaskan leaders.


In July, the community of Hoonah celebrated the maiden voyage of Alaska's longest dugout canoe (40 ft). Under the mentorship of master carver Wayne Price and the support of the Hoonah Indian Association, two canoes are being carved to journey to Bartlet Cove for the dedication of the Huna Tlingit Tribal House in August. Also pictured, the community of Hoonah is in the process of converting all lights on the harbor to LED technology. This energy efficiency move will save the community over $16,000 annually (see above).

Yakutat Travels to Washington DC to Discuss Broadband
SSP helps address connectivity challenges within remote Alaska

Yakutat is a beautiful Tlingit community located on Monti Bay. It is home to a flourishing culture, a powerful fishery and long iconic stretches of sand beaches (pictured above). Yakutat is one of the northernmost community in Southeast Alaska and it's unique remote location presents many challenges and opportunities for it's over 600 residents. One key challenge is the community's limited internet access without a Broadband connection. This slow web connection stymies economic development and poses problems for businesses, schools, hospitals and all residents that depend on internet connectivity for sharing high-bandwidth resources and information beyond community borders. 

Paul Harding, the Community Catalyst for Yakutat has dedicated time and effort to addressing this key community challenge. Earlier this spring, Harding traveled to DC to attend an E-Rate/Broadband Conference to help inform Yakutat's approach for attaining Broadband.

Sitka Food Co-op Initative Gets National Attention
Cooperative Grocer Network Looks to Southeast Alaska for Inspiration

The Sitka Food Co-op is a fantastic example of how a community can successfully band 
together to address a local need. Food is expensive in this isolated island-community and the Co-op is providing more affordable options for Sitkan's to make food purchases. According to the Co-op, "We offer over 25,000 items of dry, chill and frozen goods that are organic, non-organic, gluten free, kosher, non-GMO and just about everything else from toilet paper to tooth-paste and tomato paste and there's no minimum order required." They are offering this service at a 20-30% savings to members. The Co-op has grown from serving just a few households to now serving over 200 Sitkan families! 



The Sustainable Southeast Partnership agrees with the Co-op that this model serves as a great starting template for other Southeast Alaskan communities.
The Sitka Conservation Society Welcomes New Community Catalyst 
Chandler O'Connell returns to her hometown to work on community sustainability


Chandler O'Connell is a born and raised Sitkan, and is thrilled to be home and working to support innovative projects with the Sustainable Southeast Partnership and the Sitka Conservati
on Society. Chandler graduated from Harvard University with a degree in Human Evolutionary Biology and a minor in Health Policy. Following graduation, she worked on various initiatives in Sitka and San Francisco, before moving to Burundi as a Global Health Corps Fellow to work for the Clinton Health Access Initiative. At the end of her fellowship year, she had fallen in love with East Africa, and moved to Rwanda to work with One Acre Fund, a fast growing social enterprise serving small-scale farmers.

Five years later, humbled and grateful for the experiences she had in Rwanda, Chandler headed home. She is overjoyed to be back in Southeast Alaska, and hopes to contribute to the effort to build a healthy, vibrant, just and sustainable future for the region.
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Welcome Chandler!
What Is the Sustainable Southeast Partnership?

The Sustainable Southeast Partnership is a diverse network that includes both regional and community-based organizations that are working together on sustainable development in Southeast Alaska. 

The Sustainable Southeast Partnership includes the rural Alaskan communities of  KakeKasaan Hydaburg   Hoonah   Sitka, Klawock  and  Yakutat   .
 


Upcoming Activities

Dedication of Huna Tribal House 
The Huna Tlingits are returning to their traditional homeland in Glacier Bay this August by celebrating the completion of a Tribal House. The Tribal House dedication in Glacier Bay National Park, Bartlett Cove will take place on August 25th, 2016 Find out more about this important cultural event by clicking here.  

The Re-dedication of Naay I'Waans Whale House
The Organized Village of Kasaan, Kavilco, Incorporated and the Kasaan Haida Heritage Foundation will celebrate the restoration of the only surviving traditional Haida building in the USA. The Re-Dedication will take place on September 3rd, 2016 in Kasaan. Find out more by clicking here. 

Path to Prosperity Business Bootcamp
The 12 finalists of the 2016 Path to Prosperity Competition will attend a bootcamp in Juneau to enhance their entrepreneurial skills, expand their network, and develop their business plans from September 23-25th, 2016 in Juneau. Learn more about the program by clicking here. 

Sustainable Southeast Partnership and The Nature Conservancy Emerald Edge Attend Global IUCN Conservation Congress 
Representatives from Southeast Alaska and British Columbia will be traveling to Hawaii at the end of August to attend the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) World Conservation Congress to collaborate and exchange ideas with leaders across the globe. The Congress will take place in Hawai'i from September 1-10th, 2016, learn more by clicking here and stay tuned for updates and outcomes!

Sustainable Southeast Partnership Annual Retreat
The Sustainable Southeast Partnership will be exchanging ideas and lessons learned from the 2016 year at our annual retreat this autumn. We will be drafting work plans, discussing the vision and future of our partnership and learning about key work happening across the region. This will take place in Hoonah from October 3rd-7th,2016.