CIRI Spotlight: Gloria Yates

CIRI shareholder Gloria Yates isn’t new to U.S. Census Bureau work. In the 2000 decennial census, Gloria worked as a recruiter for census jobs and in field operations supervising census takers. With an education and background in social work, she enjoys her work with the U.S. Census Bureau because it allows her to continue to work for the well-being of the Alaska Native/American Indian community in Southcentral Alaska.

Gloria and her siblings are of Yup’ik descent; their mother, Carrie Andrew, now 81, moved to Anchorage from the village of Tuluksak in the 1960s to work as a nurse’s aide at the Alaska Native Medical Center. Their father, the late Jose Ruvalcava, was recruited from Montana to help build the Alaska Railroad. They raised their family in Anchorage and the children are all original enrollees of CIRI.

“My mother has been an inspiration to me and is the reason I’ve chosen a career working for the betterment of the Native community,” Gloria explains. “She taught us to have compassion, kindness and respect for others. Her words of wisdom gave us patience and a spirit of determination, which helps us when we’re faced with life’s challenges. Her advice and prayers continue to give us a strong foundation of faith and love for others.”

Gloria can’t overstate the importance of participating in the census. “Participating in the 2010 Census contributes to a bright future for our communities and families. The count will help shape decisions for federal funding for critical social services, neighborhood improvements, transportation, planning, schools, business development, senior services and much more. Census takers will start knocking on doors at the beginning of May to collect census information from those who have not filled out and mailed back their form. If you have not completed your census form, we encourage you to take a few minutes today to respond.”

Gloria’s prior work experience has positioned her well for census outreach: she’s served as shareholder relations coordinator for CIRI, work enhancement case manager and family advocate for Cook Inlet Tribal Council (CITC), and clinical associate for Southcentral Foundation.

“I would like to thank the CITC Board of Directors and CITC President Gloria O’Neill especially for generously donating office space to the U.S. Census Bureau where I am based. CITC’s partnership with the Bureau has helped immensely to ensure that we have an accurate count of the Alaska Native community.”

As partnership specialist, Gloria works to relay the importance of being counted. “I work with tribal organizations, other diverse ethnic communities, churches, schools, social service organizations, businesses, nonprofit organizations and elected officials,” Gloria said. “My role is to relay the census message through presentations, information booths at various events, hosting meetings, participating in conferences and organizing community events. The venue may change but the message remains the same: We need to participate and be counted!”

Outside work, Gloria is about to celebrate her 26th wedding anniversary with her husband Douglas. Their son, Douglas III, attends the University of Alaska, Anchorage on a scholarship from Southcentral Foundation’s RAISE Program.

When not working or spending time with family, Gloria has an impressive resume of volunteer activities with a diverse array of causes including the Warriors Rural Alaska Suicide Prevention Outreach. Another interest dear to her heart is the business she cofounded with husband Douglas, the Douglas Yates Native Gallery. To learn more, visit: