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NANA President Receives AFN ‘Citizen of the Year’ Award

Marie Kasaŋnaaluk Greene accepts her award at AFN 2014. Photo: Matthew F. Smith, KNOM.

A longtime leader of NANA Regional Corporation has been awarded the 2014 Citizen of the Year award at AFN this morning.

Marie Kasaŋnaaluk Greene, originally from Deering and now living and working in Kotzebue, took the stage to accept the honor Friday.

Greene is the president and CEO of NANA Regional Corporation, and during her time with NANA, she also worked with the OTZ Telephone Cooperative, the AFN organization, and she’s served on finance, workforce development, and education committees for the northwest Arctic.

Surrounded by her family on stage—her sister, her children, and more—Greene said her work has been a reflection of the women who nurtured her, as well as her faith.

“My grandmother, Nellie Carmen, raised me. And I give all that I know, with my heart and soul, to my mother, Nellie Carmen. It’s been through the grace of god, and how grateful I am, to be able to serve in any capacity. It is an honor, and a privilege.”

Before leaving the stage, Greene received gifts from the AFN committee, and asked that she and her family sing a traditional Inupiaq song before leaving the stage.

Alice Rogoff was the co-owner of news website the Alaska Dispatch, which recently bought the Anchorage Daily News to form the Alaska Dispatch News. Rogoff was awarded this year’s Denali Award, AFN’s highest honor for non-natives.

The AFN board cited Rogoff’s partnership with, and art patronage of, Alaska Natives and native communities in bestowing the award.