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Alaska Native Heritage Month

Nov 1, 2023

WHEREAS, Alaska is a culturally rich and diverse land made up of the Iñupiaq of Northwest Alaska, the Athabascan of the Interior, the Yup’ik and Cup’ik of Southwest Alaska, the Unangax of the Aleutian Islands, the Alutiiq of Southcentral Alaska, and the Tlingit, Haida, and Tsimshian of Southeast Alaska, and each of these peoples have unique traditions and history; and

WHEREAS, Alaska honors and recognizes the First People of our State and Nation, an honor bestowed not only to elders and those who lived before, but to all Alaska Natives alive today; and

WHEREAS, we value and respect the endurance of the different heritages of Alaska through the preservation of traditional languages, cultural beliefs, oral narratives, art, and subsistence lifestyles, and we appreciate the important work of elders and culture-bearers who share knowledge of the past with Alaska’s youth; and

WHEREAS, it is crucial these cultures continue to thrive for future generations and that traditional values continue to grow through the practicing of time-honored ceremonies, subsistence lifestyles, and the use of traditional languages; and

WHEREAS, renewing our commitment to cultural programs is vital to preserving Alaska Native languages, dances, and arts, and to fostering understanding of the sophistication and complexity of Alaska Native cultures; and

WHEREAS, from their service in the United States Armed Forces, to their vital role in Alaska’s economic future, to their dedication and contributions to artistic and literary endeavors, Alaska Natives play a key role in Alaska’s prosperity; and

WHEREAS, by emphasizing the important heritage and traditions of Alaska Native people, Alaska’s children can have a connection with the past that prepares them for the future, so, this month and throughout the year, we celebrate the traditions, languages, and stories of Native Alaskans and ensure their histories and contributions continue to flourish with each passing generation.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mike Dunleavy, GOVERNOR OF THE STATE OF ALASKA, do hereby proclaim November 2023 as:

Alaska Native Heritage Month

in Alaska, and encourage all Alaskans to celebrate our Native cultures this month and throughout the year with appropriate respect, educational programs, and activities.

Dated: November 1, 2023