2018 Speakers

More to Come!

Frans Johansson, The Medici Group


Mayor Ken Koelsch

Ken Koelsch grew up on a farm in Michigan and learned the value of hard work at an early age.  He moved to Juneau in 1968 to take a teaching job.  In addition to teaching English, history, and government classes at Juneau-Douglas High School, he produced and directed the annual school musicals and advised the student councils, interacting with hundreds of students over the years.

He also served as Port Director for US Customs and Border Protection for 18 years, retiring in 2014.

Mr. Koelsch holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Michigan State University, a Master of Arts in Teaching degree from the University of Alaska Fairbanks, and a Master’s degree in Administration from the University of Alaska Southeast.

He was elected mayor of Juneau in March, 2016.  He and his wife, Marian, have two grown children and three grandchildren.

Richard Peterson

Richard (Chalyee Éesh) Peterson is Tlingit from the Kaagwaantaan clan. He grew up in Kasaan, Alaska and is a life long Alaska Native resident of Southeast Alaska. Prior to being elected as President of the Central Council of the Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska (Central Council) in 2014, Richard served as Chief Executive Officer of Prince of Wales Tribal Enterprise Consortium, LLC (POWTEC), president of the Organized Village of Kasaan (OVK), mayor/city council member for the City of Kasaan, and member of the Southeast Island School District Board of Education.

Richard has developed the skills necessary to effectively represent and communicate the needs of Southeast Alaska Native people. He is adept at negotiating and team building and has worked to continually build lasting relationships that prove to be mutually beneficial to all stakeholders. Richard believes in a proactive approach to achieve win-win scenarios and continues to shape the future of the economic and social well-being of our tribal citizens through collaborative efforts and local economic development initiatives.

Ky Holland

H. "Ky" Holland is a founding partner of Alyeska Venture Management that created and manages Alaska's first seed fund for startup ventures, the Alaska Accelerator Fund. Ky is the current Hickel Professor of Strategic Leadership and Entrepreneurship at Alaska Pacific University and has two startup businesses he is operating including Mackinnon Marine Technologies, manufacturer of the AlumaSki and AlumaPro rescue watercraft; and, iA3, manufacturer of the new iA3 EdgeServer for monitoring and control of buildings and remote water and wastewater plants. Ky grew up in Alaska, has two family startups (kids) that have launched, and is active in community programs that "Build the Alaska We Want" for the next generation of Alaskans.

Rosita Worl, Ph.D. President, Sealaska Heritage Institute

Rosita Worl, whose Tlingit names are Yeidiklasókw and Kaaháni, is Tlingit, Ch’áak’ (Eagle) moiety of the Shangukeidí­ (Thunderbird) Clan from the Kawdliyaayi Hít (House Lowered From the Sun) in Klukwan. Yeidiklatsókw serves as the President of Sealaska Heritage Institute. She is an anthropologist and for many years served as Assistant Professor of Anthropology at the University of Alaska Southeast. Yeidiklatsókw has a Ph.D. and a M.S. in Anthropology from Harvard University, and a B.A. from Alaska Methodist University. She also holds an honorary doctor of sciences degree from the University of Alaska Anchorage. Dr. Worl has received many honors and works with several different Native organizations. She is an accomplished lecturer and author.


More Speakers

  • John Binkley, President of Cruise Lines International Association
  • Marilyn Romano (Alaska Airlines)