Sealaska Heritage


New Arts Campus
SHI kicks off campaign

(Website) (Brochure) (Donate) (Construction Begins!) SHI has officially launched its fundraising campaign to build a Native arts campus at Heritage Square, kicking off what will become a preeminent cultural space in downtown Juneau. The Sealaska Heritage Arts Campus is phase two of SHI’s vision to make Juneau the Northwest Coast arts capital of the world and to designate NWC art a national treasure. 


Juneau as arts capital
northwest coast art

By Jennifer Nalewicki, Smithsonian Magazine — When it comes to art capitals, Rome, New York, Paris and Berlin are a few of the global hot spots that come to mind. However, if the city of Juneau, Alaska, has any say in the matter, it could very well earn a coveted spot on the list. 

national showcase
salmon boy book

The Alaska Center for the Book has chosen SHI's Baby Raven Reads book Shanyáak'utlaax̱: Salmon Boy as the state’s featured children's book at this year's National Book Festival. The festival, which is sponsored by the Library of Congress, is an annual literary event in Washington, DC, book signings and other activities. 

southern SOUTHEAST
cultural training

SHI is recruiting educators and support staff in the southern region, including Ketchikan, Hydaburg, Wrangell, Petersburg and Metlakatla, as well as MAT students from the University of Alaska Southeast, to participate in its cultural orientation program, which aims to incorporate Native world views into schools and promote cross-cultural understanding. (Flyer)

northern SOUTHEAST
cultural training

SHI is recruiting educators and support staff in the northern region, including Ketchikan, Hydaburg, Wrangell, Petersburg and Metlakatla, as well as MAT students from the University of Alaska Southeast, to participate in its cultural orientation program, which aims to incorporate Native world views into schools and promote cross-cultural understanding. (Flyer)

Job OpportunitIES

SHI is seeking a Baby Raven Reads coordinator, a finance assistant/bookkeeper, a media specialist, an elementary early childhood specialistan education project assistant,Baby Raven Reads community liaisons, and a senior education administrative assistant.

Anchorage workshop
how to make tináas

Sealaska Heritage will sponsor a workshop in Anchorage with Tlingit artist Donald Gregory on how to make copper tináas, an ancient symbol of wealth. Students will learn how to make one tináa pendant and a pair of matching tináa earrings. Open until filled. Space is limited.


Sealaska Heritage will sponsor an in-person workshop in Hoonah with Louise Kadinger and Kathy Marvin-Mills on how to hand-sew skins from Sept. 24-26. Application deadline: Sept. 17. Space is limited. $100 fee covers all supplies. (Flyer)

Celebration 1988
videos released

SHI has digitized and posted onto YouTube footage of Celebration 1988. It was the largest Celebration in the 1980s, featuring 26 dance groups, speeches and stories from prominent Elders and a visit from the Oglala Lakota Olympian Billy Mills.

Natural Dye

Sealaska Heritage and the University of Alaska Southeast are offering an in-person course in September on how to dye using natural materials with Chilkat and Ravenstail weaver Lily Hope. Register: 796-6100 or Scholarships: Contact Davina Cole at

CRE Conference 2021
Grandparents' Knowledge

Sealaska Heritage’s fourth culturally responsive education conference, Our Cultural Landscape, was held virtually for the second time Aug. 5-7, drawing more than 450 educators from Alaska, the Lower 48, and beyond. The event featured prominent Indigenous keynote speakers and more than two dozen breakout presentations...


SHI will sponsor a workshop in Seattle from Sept. 9-12 with Tlingit artist Carmaleeda Estrada on how to make moccasins. The $75 fee includes all supplies to make one pair of moccasins. Space is limited. Application deadline: Sept. 6  (Flyer)


Removal of Grief
SHI to document rite

SHI has received a grant from a Colorado organization to record the ancient practice of removing grief through Tlingit ceremonies known as ku.éex’. The $28,000 grant from the First Nations Development Institute of Longmont will allow SHI to work with traditional scholars and clan leaders to document the “Removal of Grief” ceremony held during a ku.éex’.


SHI on Aug. 12 held a homecoming ceremony to welcome back an extraordinary collection of at.óow (sacred objects), in addition to a Tlingit mask and a hat with ties to Alaska Native land claims. “We are thrilled to welcome our ancestors home,” said SHI President Rosita Worl...(more)

Teacher of Distinction
Seralee Kairaiuak

Anchorage teacher Seralee Kairaiuak was honored with a 2021 “Teacher of Distinction” award by SHI's Board of Trustees on Saturday during SHI’s virtual education conference. Originally from the village of Kwigillingok, Kairaiuak has taught children at the Alaska Native Cultural Charter School for the past nine years. 

Raven Stamp

The U.S. Postal Service on July 30, assisted by SHI, held a release ceremony for the Raven Story Forever Stamp —  the first stamp ever illustrated by a Tlingit artist. Antonio Alcalá, who served as art director on the project, reached out to artist Rico Lanáat’ Worl about creating the stamp after seeing his work for sale in Washington DC...(more)

Baby Raven Reads
Uptick in student scores

A research firm has produced a study that links an upward trend in scores for local Alaska Native students entering kindergarten to Baby Raven Reads, an early literacy program operated by Sealaska Heritage since the 2015-2016 school year. 

spruce-root harvest, prep

Sealaska Heritage’s spruce-root gathering and weaving class held its first session on Saturday, June 19. Ten apprentice students in Juneau convened at the start of Boy Scout Camp Trail to learn the art of spruce-root gathering from Tlingit artist Naakil.aan (Hans Chester), who learned from Delores Churchill, a renowned Haida artist. 


SHI has enlisted renowned, nationally-known educators to give keynote addresses at its fourth Culturally Responsive Education Conference for teachers and administrators. For the second time, the three-day event will be held virtually because of the COVID-19 virus. 

old spruce-root basket

A Seattle man has donated an exquisite spruce-root basket to Sealaska Heritage Institute (SHI) that dates back more than 100 years. Donor Richard Zahniser purchased the piece in Southeast Alaska or Anchorage in the 1970s and decided to donate it to SHI this year to make it accessible to the public and weaving students.

videos released

SHI has digitized and posted online video of its third Celebration, a dance-and-culture festival first held in 1982 that has grown into the world’s largest gathering of the Tlingit, Haida and Tsimshian people.

visiting scholar
research: art pressures

SHI is sponsoring a visiting scholar who is studying how Southeast Alaska Native artists sustain their ancient art practices in light of current economic, legal and environmental pressures. Scholar Ben Bridgeswill conduct preliminary research this summer in Juneau and interview artists, institutional leaders and art consumers.

judson brown fund
scholarship awarded

has chosen a Ph.D. candidate with a focus on ethnomathematics as the recipient of its 2021 Judson L. Brown Leadership Award. The scholarship was given to Tlingit Eldri Waid Westmoreland, who holds a master’s degree in mathematics education and is pursuing her doctorate in American Indian and Alaska Native studies at the University of Alaska Fairbanks.

voices on the land
storytelling intensive

SHI will sponsor a summer storytelling intensive for students entering grades 4-8. The program, Voices on the Land, will be offered in-person in Juneau with a remote option available for students in outlying communities. Voices on the Land is an innovative program that teaches performing arts, digital storytelling, script-writing, story-telling techniques to improve literacy skills.