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Alaska Business Business Profile
Ukpeaġvik Iñupiat Corporation
Celebrating our past, inspiring our future

his month, Ukpeaġvik Iñupiat Corporation (UIC) will reach a monumental accomplishment. The Alaska Native village corp orati on —whi ch incorporated on April 19, 1973 in Utqiaġvik (formerly Barrow)—is turning fifty. “We can’t wait to celebrate this milestone with our shareholders, our Barrow community, and all our employees,” says CEO Pearl K. Brower, PhD.

For its next significant step, UIC will begin issuing fifty Class B shares of its stock to first-generation descendants of original shareholders this year. And in 2025, second-generation descendants of original shareholders will start reaping the same benefits. “This is a huge milestone for UIC, and it’s an incredible way to engage the next generation of shareholders into our company,” Brower says, who took the helm at UIC in April 2022.

UIC is also diligently working to rethink how it engages shareholders in workforce development and training opportunities to better equip them to operate in its companies, across the state, and beyond. These kinds of investments reflect UIC’s perpetual commitment to build foundations for the future for its more than 3,000 shareholders.

Pearl Brower
As one of about 200 Alaska Native village corporations established under the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act of 1971, UIC has come a long way from its humble origins. It began formal operations in July of 1973 with just three employees: Arthur Panigeo, president; Wesley Aiken, land chief; and Lucille Adams. The next year, UIC initiated its first major purchase—Shontz Store—and continued to grow strategically. Today, UIC’s diverse family of companies offers a wide variety of services and support to the federal government, commercial clients, and defense and civilian government agencies throughout Alaska, the United States, and the world.

Currently, UIC is Alaska’s tenth-largest local company by revenue. It has 290 locations worldwide, 3,600 employees—more than 500 of whom reside in Alaska—and more than sixty subsidiaries in more than twenty-five industries, ranging from oil and gas and construction to commercial and government services. “Fifty years ago, we were this tiny, fledgling company on the very edge of the Arctic Ocean,” Brower says. “Where we are now is an incredible testament to the past leaders and employees of the corporation.”

Brower credits much of UIC’s success to its ability to watch the market and understand what is happening in the world while also looking toward the future. Other key contributors to the corp orati on’s progression are its dedicated employees, high-caliber executive leadership team, and strong board—which focuses on working for the benefit of its people and shareholders. “We think about our people, our shareholders, and that has really driven our company forward,” Brower says.

Now as UIC proudly celebrates its fifty-year anniversary, the corporation is working toward the next big step in its evolution: to become one of Alaska’s top three companies by 2030. “We’re open for business,” Brower says. “We want to be your go-to company for whatever you need—and our track record shows that we do a fantastic job both in Alaska and beyond.”

UIC Logo
Pearl Brower, Ph.D., President and CEO
PO Box 890, Barrow, Alaska 99723
(907) 852-4460
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