Gov. Sean Parnell appointed Stephen Walkie Charles, Delores Churchill, April Gale Laktonen Councellor, Bernadette Yaayuk Alvanna-Stimpfle and Alaska Native Heritage Center (ANHC) President and CEO Annette Evans Smith to the Alaska Native Language Preservation and Advisory Council. The Council advises both the governor and the Alaska State 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.
Under Evans Smith’s leadership, ANHC has initiated a study to identify Alaska Native language learners, and plans to connect Alaska Native residents in Anchorage to the language programs that exist across Alaska. Evans Smith is actively learning the Yup’ik language through her grandmother.