Doyon Foundation News

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Doyon Foundation is currently seeking candidates for three open seats on its board of directors. The seats are for three-year terms, expiring in 2022. The deadline to apply is Monday, October 28, at 5 p.m.


Candidates seeking election to the Doyon Foundation board must be:

  • A Doyon, Limited shareholder
  • 18 years of age or older
  • Knowledgeable about private foundation management and higher education
  • Familiar with the Foundation’s vision, goals, mission and purpose
  • Committed to carrying out the duties of a board member, which include:
    • Attending quarterly board meetings
    • Serving on two board committees
    • Completing work outside of meetings
    • Representing the Foundation at various events
    • Speaking on behalf of the Foundation at events, if asked
    • Note that some board work is conducted remotely, and computer and online access is strongly encouraged

Doyon Foundation is specifically interested in candidates with nonprofit board and fundraising experience. Additionally, candidates residing in a rural community within the Doyon region are especially encouraged to apply.

Important Notice

Please note that, under federal laws governing private foundations, family members of Doyon Foundation board members are NOT eligible to receive a Doyon Foundation basic or competitive scholarship during their term on the board. Family members are defined as the board members’ spouse, ancestors, children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and the spouses of children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Current Doyon Foundation scholarship recipients are also not eligible to serve on the board.

Responsibilities/Job Description

The duties of a Doyon Foundation board member include:

  • Contribute skills that help the Foundation make progress on planning.
  • Consistently work toward and produce results related to the Foundation’s strategic focus areas, which include providing consistent measurable results, diversifying and growing revenue streams, increasing shareholder educational opportunities, enhancing operations, and revitalizing languages and traditional Native values.
  • Define and oversee the mission of the Foundation and keep it relevant to the needs of Doyon shareholders and their descendants.
  • Approve programs/services and monitor their effectiveness.
  • Provide strategic guidance to the Foundation and its executive director.
  • Ensure financial solvency and help raise resources.
  • Select, support and evaluate the executive director.
  • Ensure continuous board improvement.
  • Attend quarterly meetings in Fairbanks, Alaska, as well as any special meetings called.
  • Serve on two board committees and possibly chair one committee, which include finance/investment, development/fundraising, language revitalization/culture, and governance.
  • Participate in at least one board training event each year.
  • Demonstrate willingness to take on other duties and assignments, as needed.
  • Represent and, if asked, speak on behalf of Doyon Foundation at various events.

Application Instructions/Deadline

Applications are accepted using an online form. The form does not take long to fill out and candidates are able to upload resumes and/or other materials.

Candidates may also download and print a hard-copy form to complete and mail to Doyon Foundation, 615 Bidwell Avenue, Suite 101, Fairbanks, Alaska, 99701. Mailing instructions are provided on the form.

Please note that candidates are required to submit an updated resume along with their completed application.

It is highly recommended that candidates familiarize themselves with the Foundation and its work by reviewing the Foundation’s website, blog and social media channels prior to submitting an application. All of these links are available at

The deadline to apply is Monday, October 28, 2019, at 5 p.m.

For more information, please visit or contact Doris Miller, Doyon Foundation executive director, at 907.459.2048 or


DF_41_OpenPosition Promotion_FBIt’s an exciting time here at Doyon Foundation, with our vibrant scholarship program supporting hundreds of students in their academic journey, and our language revitalization program, which has picked up incredible momentum, launching our first four Doyon Languages Online courses this summer!

There are currently two exciting ways to join the Foundation team: as our new data entry clerk or Doyon Languages Online project manager. We are currently recruiting for both of these open positions, and invite all interested applicants to review the job descriptions and apply online.

Our Doyon Languages Online project manager position is perfect for someone who is passionate about the revitalization of Native languages. This person will be responsible for the coordination and completion of the Doyon Languages Online project, which we launched earlier this summer with the roll-out of the first four online language-learning courses in HolikachukGwich’inDenaakk’e and Benhti Kenaga’.  This is a full-time position with funding secured through September 30, 2020, although future grant opportunities may be secured to extend the position. Applications will be accepted online until the position is filled.

We are also seeking a data entry clerk, who will be responsible for entering student scholarship information into our database, and assisting our scholarship program manager with scholarship program duties. Applicants should be high school graduates or equivalent. This is a full-time position in our Fairbanks office. Applications will be accepted online through Thursday, September 26.

Interested applicants are encouraged to review the job descriptions and requirements, and apply online at Know someone who may be qualified and interested? Help us spread the word!

123_PickClickGive_FinalPush_Promotion_FB-INA big thank you to everyone who made a Pick. Click. Give. pledge to support Doyon Foundation scholarships this year. Thanks to your generosity, we have surpassed the number of donors and total amount pledged from past year. We truly appreciate your support.

The 2019 amount pledged is enough to fund approximately:

  • 9 advanced college credit scholarships for high school students taking college-level courses
  • Nearly 5 basic scholarships for part-time students
  • 3 basic scholarships for full-time students
  • Or nearly 4 short-term vocational scholarships

If you would like to help increase these numbers even further, we welcome your support! You can add or change your Pick. Click. Give. pledge through Saturday, August 31. Simply log back in to your MyAlaska account on the PFD webpage to add or change a pledge.

From all of the Foundation staff, board members and students, we say: Ana Basi’! Dogidinh! Baasee’/Maasee’! Hąį’ęę! Mä̀hsi’! Xisigidasidhut! Tsín’ęę! Tsen’anh! Tsen’įį! Quyanaq! Thank you!

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If you are passionate about the revitalization of Native languages, we have an exciting opportunity: our open Doyon Languages Online project manager position. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled. 

We are now seeking applications from qualified applicants for this position, which will be responsible for the coordination and completion of the Doyon Languages Online project. This is an incredibly exciting time for the project, which we launched earlier this summer with the roll-out of the first four online language-learning courses in Holikachuk, Gwich’inDenaakk’e and Benhti Kenaga’.

Our Doyon Languages Online project manager handles a variety of tasks, including representing the project at off-site cultural and language related events, developing teacher training materials and hosting training sessions, conducting outreach, providing support for users of the online lessons, and satisfying grant reporting requirements.

We’re looking for candidates preferably with a master’s degree; experience in language teaching, teacher training, or education planning; strong interpersonal skills; and familiarity with Athabascan languages, the Doyon region, Alaska classrooms, and general education requirements of the k-12 system.

Our Doyon Languages Online project manager works with our language revitalization team in our office in Fairbanks. This is a full-time position with funding secured through September 30, 2020, although future grant opportunities may be secured to extend the position.

Interested applicants are encouraged to review the job description and requirements, and apply online at


118_People Promotion_Noah_FB-INIn honor of the 2019 Morris Thompson Memorial Golf Classic, we’d like to introduce you to another of our amazing Morris Thompson competitive scholarship recipients: Noah Lovell. A University of Alaska Fairbanks student, Noah is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in business administration with an emphasis in marketing. He graduates in 2020.

His parents are Patrick Lovell of Chelan, Washington, and Sallie Lovell of Fairbanks. His maternal grandparents are Lillian Evans of Rampart and the late Joseph Burns of Fairbanks. Noah writes that his paternal grandmother was born and raised in Japan and his paternal grandfather is from the Midwest; both passed away before he had a chance to meet them. Noah’s hometown is Fairbanks.

Noah Lovell: I’m beyond grateful for the opportunities Doyon Foundation has provided for me. Because of the Foundation’s basic and competitive scholarships, I’ve been able to pay the cost of tuition and gas for my car, which I use to commute to and from school. I haven’t had to take out loans. I haven’t had to pay out of pocket to help get through college.

Doyon Foundation has made a financially stress-free college experience a reality. It’s an immense blessing to say, “I’m debt free.”

Doyon Foundation: That’s inspiring, especially when so many students find paying for college to be a real challenge.

NL: The biggest challenge I faced during my college education is the feeling that I may not be doing enough. The only way to combat this is to tackle your education head on, and that’s exactly what I’ve done.

I try my best in every project, essay or presentation. The reward isn’t just the feeling that you’ve done your best. It’s knowing that you’ve given it your all and made yourself proud.

DF: You believe that requires looking inside first.

NL: I think we go through life trying to make others happy. But we can easily check up on ourselves throughout the day, week or month or even the school year by asking, “Am I on track?”

Doing this makes you more self-aware. You’re able to build up maturity as an individual and when you do that, you become a builder of a stronger community and society.

DF: For you, asking if you’re “on track” started in childhood!

NL: I’ve played the violin since fourth grade and started playing the piano around three years ago. I love to read and write poetry. Painting has become a new hobby even though I’m not very good at it.

But that’s what life is all about — trying new things. I’ve centered my life around trying everything healthy at least once. If I’m good at it, then great, but if not, that’s OK. I can try another thing.

One of the most important qualities to have in life is the ability to try something new and not care if you’ll be judged or not.

DF: And if what you love is learning?

NL: If you love being a student, then go all the way to get your doctorate! The world is in your hands.

DF: What takes up your time outside of school?

NL: I volunteer regularly with the Fairbanks Concert Association and with Great Alaskan Accounting People. (The acronym, GAAP, is a play on Generally Accepted Accounting Principles, the federally adopted accounting standards.) I was the information technology officer for GAAP this past school year but next year I’ll be the recruiter, which I’m really looking forward to.

DF: You’ve mentioned that you’re known for being optimistic. How did you come by that trait?

NL: Everyone handles disappointment differently, but I’ve learned that when you’re able to change your outlook so that the world isn’t something to be feared but instead has opportunities waiting for you, then everything will shift. This takes time, but it’s so worth it.

It’s not only about coping with that feeling you get when all your aunties and uncles are asking, “What are you going to do next?” and you realize that you haven’t put much time or thought into the goals and skills that life is asking of you. Instead it’s learning that life is always going to open up when you’re able to give.

Giving is what makes life enjoyable. My favorite thing to do is give love, which makes the whole entire world run.

DF: That sounds like a tip for success in college and beyond.

NL: First and foremost, believe in yourself. Believe that you can do it and everything else will fall into place. Success starts from within.

DF: Since you mentioned it — and aunties and uncles might be reading — what are you going to do next?

NL: My summer plans include interning in Washington, D.C., for U.S. Sen. Dan Sullivan, R-Alaska. I also plan to work toward my master’s degree in business and I hope to teach English in Japan one day.

Doyon Foundation has helped motivate me and inspire me. Without Doyon scholarships, I would have had a harder time going through college. Thank you! Baasee’

Named in honor of the late Morris Thompson, former president and CEO of Doyon, Limited, the Morris Thompson Scholarship, awarded by Doyon Foundation, has helped more than 200 students earn college degrees. The annual Morris Thompson Memorial Golf Classic raises money for this competitive scholarship fund. This year’s golf classic took place June 13 and 14 in Fairbanks.

A special thank you to all of our 2019 Morris Thompson Memorial Golf Classic sponsors, including our bachelor’s-level sponsors: Alaska Airlines, Brice Inc., Bristol Bay Native Corporation, Calista Corporation, CIRI, ConocoPhillips Alaska, Doyon Drilling, Inc., Dorsey & Whitney, LLP, Flowline Alaska, Inc., Saltchuk Companies, and Wells Fargo. Your support makes scholarships for students like Noah possible! View all 2019 sponsors on our website.

To learn about future opportunities to support the event as a sponsor, golfer or volunteer, visit the Foundation website for details. 

111_DLO_Course Promotion_Holikachuk_FB-INCourse now available for free to all interested learners

With no fluent speakers remaining, development of the Holikachuk language-learning course was perhaps the most challenging – and one of the most important – efforts of Doyon Foundation’s Doyon Languages Online project. Released today, Holikachuk is the fourth course release for Doyon Languages Online, which is creating introductory online lessons for nine of the 10 endangered Doyon region languages. The online Holikachuk course, as well as previously released courses in Gwich’in, Denaakk’e and Benhti Kenaga’, is now available at no charge to all interested language learners through the Doyon Foundation website.



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Like the other Doyon Languages Online courses, the Holikachuk course was developed by a team of content creators, Elders and a linguistics consultant, with the support of Foundation staff.

“The Holikachuk content creation team was in the most difficult position in comparison with the other languages this project focused on. While language is still a part of the community in Grayling, the last fluent Holikachuk Elder passed away in 2012. Working from archival recordings, and Elders that have a working knowledge of the language, the content creation team drafted, proofed and recorded 10 units of material,” said Allan Hayton, director of the Foundation’s language revitalization program.

The finished Holikachuk – part 1 course includes five units, each with five lessons of content, reviews and unit assessments, as well as seven conversational videos with subtitles in English and Holikachuk, and 15 culture and grammar notes. A Holikachuk – part 2 course, including an additional five units, will be released in the fall. Supplemental resources, including a Holikachuk noun dictionary, are available in the Alaska Native Language Archive.

The Foundation extends a special thank you to the Holikachuk content creation team, Elizabeth Keating and Giulia Oliverio-Deacon, with special contributions from Tristan Madros, Elizabeth Painter, Mary Deacon and Harriet Nicholas; as well as the Organized Village of Grayling; Tribal Administrator Rachel Freireich; Chief Ivan Demientieff; Grayling School; Shirley Clark; Doyon, Limited; the Alaska Native Language Center and Alaska Native Language Archive; and all the people who worked with the Holikachuk language from the 1970s to today. Their work makes this course possible.

The Holikachuk people used to live in many villages on the Innoko River drainage near and above the Holikachuk Slough and on the Yukon River for seasonal salmon fishing. Starting in the 1800s the population was severely impacted by several waves of outsiders and diseases. Most people finally gathered at Holikachuk. A few families also moved to Shageluk, Denaakk’e (Koyukon) villages on the Yukon, and the Kuskokwim River area. In the 1960s, due to annual spring floods and erosion, the people of Holikachuk moved to Grayling on the Yukon. The Holikachuk language is most closely related to Lower Denaakk’e (Koyukon) Athabascan, but culturally the Holikachuk people are closer to the Deg Hit’an people of Shageluk, Anvik and Holy Cross.

The declining number of speakers, and the desire to preserve and pass along the Native languages of the Doyon region to future generations is the driving force behind Doyon Foundation’s Doyon Languages Online project. The project is creating introductory online lessons for nine of the 10 endangered Doyon region languages: Holikachuk, Denaakk’e (Koyukon), Benhti Kenaga’ (Lower Tanana), Hän, Dinjii Zhuh K’yaa (Gwich’in), Deg Xinag, Dinak’i (Upper Kuskokwim), Nee’anděg’ (Tanacross) and Née’aaneegn’ (Upper Tanana).

Earlier this month, Doyon Foundation officially launched Doyon Languages Online with the release of the Gwich’in, Denaakk’e and Benhti Kenaga’ courses. This spring, the Foundation gave a preview of Doyon Languages Online with the release of a special set of Hän language lessons based on the work of the late Isaac Juneby, an Alaska Native leader, respected Elder and language revitalization pioneer.

The Doyon Languages Online launch coincides with the International Year of Indigenous Languages, which Doyon Foundation is a partner organization of.  In 2016, the United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution proclaiming 2019 as the International Year of Indigenous Languages. At the time, it was estimated that 40 percent of the 6,700 languages spoken around the world were in danger of disappearing.

Doyon Languages Online is a partnership between Doyon Foundation and 7000 Languages, a nonprofit that supports endangered language learning through software donated by Transparent Language. It is funded by a three-year grant from the Administration for Native Americans (ANA), awarded in 2016, and an additional three-year grant from the Alaska Native Education Program (ANEP), awarded in 2017.

For more information on the Holikachuk course and the Doyon Languages Online project, please visit or contact 907.459.2048 or For assistance signing up for or using Doyon Languages Online, view the instructional video series on YouTube.

ANA Language Revitalization Grant #: 90NL0626. Disclaimer: The views expressed in this publication, and all others associated with the Doyon Languages Online project, do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Administration for Children and Families, or the Administration for Native Americans.

The 2019 Morris Thompson Memorial Golf Classic took place under mostly sunny skies earlier this month, raising money for scholarships and honoring the memory of the late Morris Thompson.

The 19th annual event was held June 13 and 14 at Chena Bend Golf Course on Fort Wainwright near Fairbanks. The two-day event included a skills tournament and reception with Calcutta on Thursday, followed by the golf tournament and banquet on Friday. See more event photos on Facebook.


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The event raised more than $119,000 for Doyon Foundation competitive scholarships. The total includes fundraising at the Calcutta, where supporters bid on the golf team they think will win in the tournament.

At Thursday night’s reception, guests viewed a video tribute to the event’s namesake, Morris Thompson, an avid supporter of education who served as the president/CEO of Doyon, Limited from 1985 until his passing in 2000. Guests were also introduced via video to some of the Foundation’s students and alumni, who shared how Doyon Foundation’s support has made a difference in their educational journeys.

During the reception, the Foundation made a special gift presentation to Charlene Marth, who has faithfully volunteered for the event every year for the past 19 years. Marth, who is the niece of the late Morris Thompson, is retiring from Doyon, Limited this year and said she will continue to volunteer even when retired.

The reception also included a spirited live auction, where guests bid on items including a trip to Peppermill Resort in Reno, a seven-day Holland America cruise, a Houston Astros super fan experience, and a Callway golf package.

The Friday golf tournament, which featured 32 teams of four players, was once again sold out, with a waiting list of interested players. Congratulations to this year’s winning team, Rick Boyles, John McAbee, Scott Jepsen and Rick Schok, Jr., who took first place with their score of 114. See more tournament results on the Foundation website.

The golf classic, which raises money for the Morris Thompson competitive scholarship fund, relies on the support of both sponsors and volunteers, both of which increased this year. The Foundation was pleased to welcome Associated Pipe Line Contractors, Inc. as a new $15,000 doctorate-level sponsor, and is thankful for the more than 60 volunteers who gave of their time at the event this year. See a list of 2019 sponsors on the Foundation website.

A special thank you to Explore Fairbanks and MAC Federal Credit Union, sponsors of the new dice roll game, which replaced the hole-in-one contest at the 2019 event. Congratulations to Stuart Thompson, who won the top prize of $5,000.

The 2020 event is tentatively scheduled for June 11 and 12; watch for additional announcements on the Foundation website.

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