Staff Introductions

Jonella Larson White, Executive Director
Jonella Larson White brings a unique background in rural development and community planning enhanced with cultural documentation and museum studies (Master of Liberal Arts, Harvard University). Professional development activities include an internship at the University of Alaska Museum of the North, the Smithsonian Institution National Museum of the American Indian, a research paper with the Smithsonian Institution Arctic Studies Center Yupik Heritage Project, a five month volunteer program teaching English in Bupsa, Nepal, and a semester at Tromso University, Center for Saami Studies. An artist herself, she served as mask designer for Juneau-based Opera To GO! touring production of the Mozart remake, "Arctic Magic Flute." Larson White, Ququngaq, is St. Lawrence Island Yupik raised in Nome with family ties to Savoonga.

Carrie Swanson, Business Manager
Carrie Swanson, Cingliaq, has more than 30 years experience in Alaska's indigenous tourism and arts industry. Tutored at a very young age in the intricate and delicate art of traditional skin sewing and parka design by grandmother Lucy Beaver and mother Anna Anvil; she blends a childhood steeped in Bering Sea coast Yup'ik traditional arts with unprecedented career experience in contemporary Alaska Native arts management--serving as demonstrating artist, project consultant, artist liaison and program coordinator. At the Alaska Native Heritage Center she worked with the cruise ship and tourism industry promoting authentic indigenous Alaska cultural experiences and has delivered successful programs for ANAF in Boston, Las Vegas, Sante Fe, New York and the Smithsonian Institution National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C.

Helen Bush, Accountant
Helen Bush has over 16 years of various accounting and finance experience. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Accountancy from Arizona State University. She has worked in for-profit/non-profit companies, 638 contracting, hospital finance, municipality accounting, individual/corporate tax preparation, and grant administration/finance, small business financing, accounting and bookkeeping. Helen has volunteered as a school board member, finance committee member for the City of Bethel and a Committee for the National Bureau of Indian Affairs Budget Committee member. Helen is Yup'ik and was born and raised in Bethel, Alaska.

Trina Landlord, Communications Associate
Joining the team in December 2010, Trina Landlord is the Communications Associate for the Alaska Native Arts Foundation. Her background has been on indigenous issues locally and internationally. She has worked as the Communications Coordinator for the Alaska Marketplace, an economic development initiative of the Alaska Federation of Natives (AFN) modeled after the World Bank Development Marketplace, and managed the annual Elders and Youth Conference during AFN Convention week for over 1,000 statewide participants. Her work on Alaskan issues earned her a fellowship at the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland working with top leaders from across the globe. She has also worked at the former Alaska House, a cultural embassy in New York City. Landlord is a University of Alaska Anchorage candidate studying Journalism and Public Communications and one of Alaska's Top Forty Under 40. She is of Yup'ik ancestry born in Bethel, grew up in Mountain Village, Anchorage and Pennsylvania.

Ryan Romer, Photographer
Ryan Romer is the gallery photographer for the Alaska Native Arts Foundation. He takes pictures of the artwork for the website, social media and image library. An artist himself, he works in a variety of mediums such as printmaking, oil and acrylic painting and ceramics. He says about his work, "It is elevated from first hand experiences living in Alaska's diverse rural communities and environment." Ryan received a bachelor's degree in printmaking from the University of Alaska Anchorage. He is of Yup'ik and Athabascan ancestry from Bethel, currently living in Anchorage.