Recognition


“When I’m learning my language, I feel like I’m finding myself and understanding who I am.”

 

Diloola Erickson’s parents are Susan Erickson from Kaltag and Arne Erickson from Tok. Her maternal grandparents are the late Irene and Alexander Solomon, Jr., of Kaltag. Her paternal grandparents are Joyce Erickson and the late John Erickson of Tok. Diloola’s language is Denaakk’e (Koyukon).

Diloola edited

Born in Sitka, Diloola Erickson was raised in the Tlingit village of Hoonah in Southeast Alaska, where her favorite part of school was Tlingit class. And though she loved learning Tlingit, she remembers feeling that something was missing.

“I grew up so far from my culture that I always felt distant from it – I always had a longing to know more,” she says.

To help ensure that her 3-year-old daughter, Tsee’ołyeets, is immersed in her language and culture from an early age, Diloola is focused on becoming fluent in Denaakk’e, the language of the Athabascan people of the central Koyukuk and Yukon rivers.

Along with Dewey Hoffman, who works with language revitalization in Fairbanks, and University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF) language instructor Lorraine David, Diloola co-hosts a weekly language-learning group at her home and has enrolled her daughter in a language-learning classroom at Fairbanks Native Association. She practices Denaakk’e with her daughter daily, using a Denaakk’e weather wheel and family name chart. “I want to pass on my language and culture so that she’ll always know who she is and where she comes from,” Diloola says.

A Doyon, Limited shareholder, Diloola’s commitment to Denaakk’e fluency deepened when she attended the Alaska Native Studies conference in 2017. It was at an intensive workshop facilitated by Dewey Hoffman that Diloola met Lorraine David, a fluent Denaakk’e speaker who inspired Diloola to start her language journey. Lorraine is a former Doyon Foundation board member and veteran language instructor at UAF.

“I was craving more sessions like that,” Diloola says, and Lorraine agreed to meet with Diloola and her group weekly. She often records their sessions and tries to listen daily to gain vocabulary and pronunciation.

“Lorraine is passionate about passing on our language. She has been one of the biggest supporters in my journey,” Diloola says.

A UAF student graduating in May with a bachelor’s degree in rural development and a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering, Diloola plans to pursue work in positions that will allow her to help raise up Alaska Native people. She sees language revitalization as part of the efforts to create positive change in Alaska Native communities. DErickson

As a First Alaskans Institute summer intern at Doyon Foundation in 2017, Diloola contributed to the Doyon Languages Online team by developing multimedia materials promoting language revitalization in the Doyon region. The team’s favorites include stickers featuring beaded gloves conveying everyday phrases in Denaakk’e, like “Enee!” (“good!”). Familiar to any conference-goer, “Hello, my name is …” adhesive name tags were created by Diloola in each of the Doyon region languages. Name tags were available at school fairs throughout Anchorage and Fairbanks.

edzooDiloola also helped lead a workshop at the 2017 First Alaskans Institute Elders & Youth Conference, “Taking Language Revitalization Online – Using GIFs to Get the Word Out.” Participants developed their own GIFs – a format that animates images to easily share them online – and brainstormed other forms of social media aimed at encouraging people to take join in language revitalization.

“Ultimately my goal is to use my education to uplift my culture and the Alaska Native community,” Diloola says. “Learning my language is the biggest part of learning who I am.”

As Doyon Foundation continues to grow our language revitalization efforts in the Doyon region, we are noticing a group of people who are committed and dedicating their own time to learning and perpetuating their ancestral language. We are pleased to share some of these “Language Champion” profiles with you. If you know a language champion, please nominate him or her by contacting our language program director at haytona@doyon.com. Language champions may also complete our profile questionnaire here. You may learn more about our language revitalization program on our website.

Fill our our grad info form by April 25

DF_20_2018Grads Promotion_blog

Did you graduate this year? Or are you expecting to graduate in academic year 2017 – 18? Doyon Foundation wants to hear from you!

We are asking all Doyon Foundation students who are graduating during the 2017 – 18 school year to complete a short graduate information request form by Wednesday, April 25.

We’ll feature the information you share in our popular annual graduate yearbook! Check out the 2017 graduate yearbook on our website.  

This is our opportunity to celebrate all of your hard work and accomplishments! So please take a few moments now to fill out our graduate questionnaire.

Not graduating but know someone who is? Be sure to pass along this info to them! Thank you!

University of Alaska Fairbanks College of Liberal Arts Center for Cross-Cultural Studies Indigenous Studies announces a public defense:

Polly Hyslop

Candidate for Doctor of Philosophy

Circle Peacemaking in Kake, Alaska

A case study of Indigenous Planning and Dispute Systems Design

Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2018 @ 10 am

Design Theater (ELIF 401)

1-866-245-9952

Flyer- Polly Hyslop Defense 022018.pdf

Doyon Foundation is pleased to announce a new scholarship fund, the Mary Jane and Hugh Fate, Jr. Leadership Fund, established by their daughter, Jennifer Fate. Jennifer, a member of both the Doyon, Limited and Doyon Foundation boards, created the fund to honor Mary Jane and Hugh’s accomplishments for the betterment of the Doyon people.

IMG_2992-001“There are many kinds of leadership. There’s community leadership, business leadership, educational leadership and the kind of leadership that stands up and says difficult truths out loud,” Jennifer said. “This fund is in honor of my parents, Mary Jane and Bud Fate. In their 65-year love story, they lived all of these types of leadership.”

“This fund celebrates those who strive to make our community a better place and our people, a stronger and healthier people,” Jennifer added. “It’s a fund that also recognizes the importance of those who bring leadership to healing past traumas, stopping current abuses and reshaping lives.”

Mary Jane’s life has been a positive example of leadership and involvement in her Alaska Native community. Overcoming adversity at a young age, Mary Jane understood the significance of cultural support and community involvement. Through practicing her Athabascan subsistence traditions, through embracing leadership, and with the resilient support of her husband, Hugh, Mary Jane became one of the most inspirational and motivating Alaska Native leaders of her generation.

Both Mary Jane and Hugh dedicated their lives to the betterment of the Alaska Native and Doyon region people. They were co-founders of the Fairbanks Native Association, mentored many Alaska Natives and Doyon region peoples, and provided dental health services throughout rural interior villages, traveling by small plane to villages where no dental services existed. Mary Jane served as the first female co-chair of the Alaska Federation of Natives, president of Baan O Yeel Kon Village Corporation, and on numerous other boards and commissions.

“We are grateful for the example set by Mary Jane and Hugh Fate, Jr., and we are grateful for Jennifer’s generosity in establishing this scholarship, which will make it possible for future Alaska Native leaders to get the education they need to carry the torch forward into the next generation,” said Doris Miller, Doyon Foundation executive director.

Doyon shareholders studying health care, mental health care, business or any profession that contributes to the greater Alaska Native business, cultural or social community will be eligible for the new scholarship. Funds may be used for college, graduate school, post-secondary education, vocational or certificate programs. Preference will be given to students overcoming adversity or intending to enter a profession that contributes to the social or economic well-being of the Alaska Native community.

The first scholarship from the fund will be a basic scholarship awarded in spring 2018. The deadline for the spring 2018 scholarships has passed. A competitive scholarship will also be awarded in academic year 2018 – 2019. The next competitive scholarship application deadline is Tuesday, May 15, 2018, for scholarships for the 2018 – 2019 academic year.

“Please encourage Doyon shareholders working on a degree or vocation in business, education, mental health and health, substance abuse counseling, or spiritual and cultural training to apply for this scholarship. And thank you to the many leaders out there. Anaa Basee’,” Jennifer said.

Contributions from other donors to the Mary Jane and Hugh Fate, Jr. Leadership Fund are welcome. Secure online donations may be made on the Foundation website; be sure to note “Fate leadership scholarship” in the “special instructions” box. Donations may also be made by mailing a check to Doyon Foundation at 615 Bidwell Ave., Suite 101, Fairbanks, Alaska 99701. Please note “Fate leadership scholarship” in the memo line.

For more information about Doyon Foundation, scholarship eligibility and application instructions, or opportunities to support students, please visit www.doyonfoundation.com or contact 907.459.2048 or foundation@doyon.com.

The Doyon Foundation 2017 Graduate Yearbook is now available on the Foundation website!

2017 grad yearbook collagePacked with photos and profiles, the yearbook celebrates our 2017 graduates including:

  • 1 pre-school
  • 36 high school
  • 3 certificates
  • 22 associate’s degrees
  • 19 bachelor’s degrees
  • 5 master’s degrees
  • And 3 doctorate degrees!

Download your copy of the 2017 Graduate Yearbook now!

Have an addition or correction? Please send them to foundation@doyon.com or call 907.459.2048.

Congratulations to the Class of 2017!

Graduation – it’s our favorite time of the year! (Well, except maybe for Christmas…)

It’s a time to celebrate the hard work and incredible accomplishments of our students who are at the end of one important journey and getting ready to start on the next.

Join us at our annual graduate reception to give them some well-deserved kudos and say conGRADulations!

Doyon Foundation 2017 Graduate Reception

Friday, May 5

2 p.m.

Doyon Industrial Facility Cafeteria

615 Bidwell Ave., Fairbanks, Alaska

capWe’ll have inspiring addresses from our student and alumni speakers, recognize our 2016 – 2017 graduates, and enjoy refreshments.


High school and college students who are graduating during the 2016 – 2017 academic year
are encouraged to attend, along with their friends, families, teachers and other Foundation supporters.

If you plan to join us, please RSVP with your name and the number of people attending to sommerj@doyon.com or 907.459.2048.

Doyon Foundation congratulates the Doyon, Limited shareholders who were included on the Dean’s and Chancellor’s Lists at the University of Alaska Fairbanks for the fall 2016 semester!

  • Denae Benson
  • Ethan Cadzow
  • Christina Edwin
  • Julia Fisher-Salmon
  • Linda Folger
  • Sarah Henzie
  • Kyle Jones
  • Patricia Kriska
  • Jolie Murray
  • Jamie Desrochers
  • Selina Sam

Keep up the good work and best of luck during the spring semester!

If you made the Dean’s or Chancellor’s list at a school other than UAF, please let us know! Contact us at foundation@doyon.com or 907.459.2048.

If you are planning to attend school this summer, remember to submit your basic scholarship application by March 15. Find more information at www.doyonfoundation.com, or contact us at foundation@doyon.com or 907.459.2048.

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