Right Moves
Providence Alaska
Ella Goss
The CEO of Providence hospital in Anchorage is now in charge of the nonprofit’s entire Alaska network. Ella Goss became Chief Executive of Providence Alaska in September upon the retirement of Preston Simmons, who had overseen hospitals in Anchorage, Seward, Valdez, and Kodiak for five years. Goss, originally from Canada, earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in nursing from Chamberlain University. She worked in emergency departments in Newfoundland and Kotzebue. In 1997, she came to Providence as a staff nurse in the Anchorage emergency department, and she worked her way up to management roles.
Doyon, Limited
Cheyenna Kuplack
Doyon, Limited, the Fairbanks-based regional Native corporation for the Interior, promoted Cheyenna Kuplack to Communications Manager. In this role, she manages the internal and external communications for the corporation and assists with special projects and events. A Doyon descendant, Kuplack is Gwich’in Athabascan and a tribal member of Gwichyaa Zhee.
National Park Service
Brooke Merrell
The deputy superintendent of Denali National Park and Preserve is promoted to Superintendent, the first woman to hold the job in the park’s 105-year history. Brooke Merrell has been acting superintendent at Denali since late 2021. Merrell grew up in Pittsburgh and received a master’s degree in urban planning from the University of Utah and a law degree from Lewis and Clark Law School. Merrell came to Alaska in 2009 as a National Park Foundation Transportation Scholar working on a statewide long-range transportation plan. She never considered Alaska as a place to live but soon joined the National Park Service permanently as a transportation planner. In January 2021, Merrell moved to Denali as deputy superintendent.
Jenna Wright
Anchorage Economic Development Corporation (AEDC) brought aboard Jenna Wright as Vice President, responsible for managing and supporting strategies, programs, and initiatives that foster a diverse, prosperous, and sustainable Anchorage economy. Wright earned bachelor’s degrees in marketing and investment finance from UAA and an MBA with an emphasis in business intelligence and data analytics. Prior to joining AEDC, Wright served the State of Alaska as deputy director of the Division of Motor Vehicles.
Fairbanks Concert Association
Marie-Sylvestre Olesen
The new Executive Director of the Fairbanks Concert Association (FCA) is Marie-Sylvestre Olesen. Originally from Montreal, Canada, Olesen has lived in Fairbanks since 2014. She served as UAF’s coordinator for Undergraduate Research and Scholarly Activity and coordinator for Arctic and special projects. She earned a master’s degree in tourism management from the University of Greenwich and holds a bachelor’s degree in visual arts with a minor in anthropology from the Université de Montréal. Olesen succeeds Anne Biberman, departing FCA after fourteen years.
Coffman Engineers
Justin Freeman
A former employee of Coffman Engineers is back with the firm as Vice President of Carbon Capture Utilization & Storage (CCUS) and Hydrogen. Justin Freeman rejoins Coffman to lead a companywide initiative spearheading the CCUS and hydrogen market strategy. Freeman is a resident of Alaska with a degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Colorado Boulder. His background includes successfully developing and managing a CCUS program for a multinational corporation.
Ahtna Environmental
Bryan Lund
Ahtna, the Glennallen-based regional Native corporation for the Copper River valley, hired Bryan Lund as Vice President of Operations. Lund is officially working for subsidiary Ahtna Environmental but is also responsible for day-to-day operations supporting Tim Finnigan, president of Ahtna’s other subsidiaries, including Ahtna Engineering Services, Ahtna Infrastructure and Technologies, and Ahtna Solutions. Lund earned a bachelor’s degree in geology from Montana State University and has more than twenty-five years of experience in an executive leadership role in the environmental and construction sectors.
Ahtna Global
Ahtna’s construction subsidiary, Ahtna Global, also made several hires.

Brandon Carlson is now a Senior Construction Manager in the Anchorage office. Carlson has twenty-three years of construction experience.

Curtis Huffman comes aboard as a Senior Construction Manager in the Palmer office. Huffman has twelve years of experience in heavy civil construction and design.

Ryan Jones joins the firm as a Senior Site Superintendent in the Anchorage office. Jones brings fifteen years of experience in Alaska construction, including door installation, carpentry, and welding.

Jack Divelbiss comes aboard as an Engineer 1, assisting in design, development, implementation, and analysis of project programs. Divelbiss recently earned a bachelor’s degree in construction engineering from Washington State University.

Alaska Native Heritage Center
Kelsey Ciugun Wallace
The Alaska Native Heritage Center (ANHC) is bringing back a former employee, Kelsey Ciugun Wallace, as Director of Development and Communications. In that role, Wallace is in charge of internal and external corporate communications, public relations, marketing, fundraising, and donor stewardship. Wallace is Yup’ik, originally from Bethel. She obtained her undergraduate degree from UAF in rural development with a concentration in indigenous organizational management and a minor in the Central Yup’ik language. Wallace started her professional career at ANHC and then spent nearly a decade working in the communications sector. Most recently, she was the communications director for Native Peoples Action.
Alaska Communications
Patrick Bergt
Anchorage-based telecom Alaska Communications hired Patrick Bergt as Deputy General Counsel. In this role, he leads legal functions, including contract administration, regulatory compliance, regulatory advocacy, and risk management. A lifelong Alaskan, Bergt is an experienced attorney in civil, criminal, municipal, and regulatory matters unique to the state.
Alaska Railroad
Brian O’Dowd
The Alaska Railroad Corporation promoted Brian O’Dowd to Director of Engineering Services. O’Dowd earned a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from UAA and worked as an intern at the railroad in the early 2000s. As a certified professional engineer, he managed and directed projects for key engineering firms, and then he returned to the railroad in 2018. He succeeds veteran railroad employee Christian Ryll, who retires after nearly thirty-three years with the state-owned railroad.
Dashiell Hillgartner
UAS promoted its Academic Exchange and Away Study Coordinator to the position of Director of Admissions, overseeing the Juneau, Ketchikan, and Sitka campuses. In his new role, Dashiell Hillgartner works to increase access to undergraduate programs and contributes to strategic enrollment goals. Hillgartner received his bachelor’s degree in anthropology from the University of Oregon and his master’s in international education management from Middlebury Institute of International Studies in Vermont. Prior to working at UAS, Hillgartner worked with nonprofits, universities, and high schools in Chile, Peru, Costa Rica, and Spain.
Stoel Rives
Jonathon Roder
The law firm of Stoel Rives brought Jonathon Roder to its Anchorage office in the role of Landman. Roder brings a decade of experience working as a licensed professional land surveyor in Alaska and an extensive background in researching property records. Roder is proficient in performing land records research and, as part of the firm’s Environmental & Natural Resources Law practice group, assists with due diligence reports concerning mineral transactions, mining permits, and title reports. Roder received a bachelor’s degree in geomatics from UAA and previously worked for SurvBase and JOA Surveys.
For more about the parent company of Ahtna Environmental and Ahtna Global, choose this article.

For an update on Brian O’Dowd’s employer, choose this article.