Movers & Shakers 01/12/14



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John Binder has been appointed deputy commissioner of the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities effective Jan. 7. Binder will oversee the State of Alaska international airport system, which includes Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport and Fairbanks International Airport, and the Division of Statewide Aviation, which encompasses the 252 state owned rural airports. Binder joined the department in June 2013 as the operations manager for the Division of Statewide Aviation. He previously worked as a systems analyst planner for the National Airspace Defense Program and served in the U.S. Air Force for 21 years, retiring in 2012 with the rank of lieutenant colonel. He holds a bachelor’s degree in astronautical engineering, a master’s degrees in space systems and aeronautical sciences.

Harold Houston Sr. of Juneau has been elected president of the Rural Alaska Community Action Program Inc. board of directors. Houston, an Alaska Native leader representing the Tlingit Haida Central Council Indians of Alaska, will serve his first term as RurAL CAP’s board president. Houston has served three years as a member of the RurAL CAP Board including a term as secretary/treasurer. Houston is a graduate of Hoonah High School, is a certified home inspector and holds a current six-pack guiding license. Steve Longley of Nome was reelected vice president, and Jacqueline Dailey of Juneau was elected secretary/treasurer.

Dr. Marius Maxwell has founded the new Arctic Spine clinic in Anchorage. Chief neurosurgeon Maxwell studied at Cambridge University, Oxford University and Harvard Medical School, and brings more than two decades of experience in the field of neurosurgery to Alaska. Maxwell specializes in treating spine conditions such as chronic neck or back pain; bulging, collapsed or degenerative discs; sciatica; failed back surgeries; arthritis of the spine; lumbar spinal stenosis, and also manages the entire spectrum of cranial conditions such as brain tumors and skull fractures. Maxwell has successfully performed more than 10,000 surgeries and is board certified with the American Board of Neurological Surgeons. He is the sole expert reviewing neurosurgeons to the Board of Medicine for the state of Alaska and has traveled and practiced neurosurgery all over the world.

Michael Pawlowski was named deputy commissioner for strategic finance at the Alaska Department of Revenue. Pawlowski currently serves as petroleum fiscal systems advisor to the commissioner. A lifelong Alaskan, Pawlowski graduated from Alaska Pacific University. He previously worked for Alaska Permanent Capital Management Co., the Alaska Natural Gas Development Authority, and as an aide specializing in oil and gas, energy, and finance issues for the Alaska Legislature. Pawlowski will lead special projects and teams within the department. Pamela Leary has been chosen to lead the Treasury Division as the state treasurer. She had served as state comptroller since 2007. Leary began her career as an auditor with Price Waterhouse and became a partner in the firm PricewaterhouseCoopers. After moving to Alaska, Leary owned and operated a business before reentering the accounting profession with the Alaska Permanent Fund Corp. She holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, and is a certified public accountant in the State of Alaska. Leary was recognized by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants in 2013 for her work in creating a transparent accounting system of the state’s $49 billion portfolio comprised of general funds, budget reserves and retirement trust accounts.

Michael E. Kreger, a partner in Perkins Coie’s Construction and Real Estate practice group, has been named by Best Lawyers as Anchorage Construction Law “Lawyer of the Year” for 2014. “Lawyers of the Year” are selected based on particularly impressive voting averages received during the peer-review assessments. In addition to the Lawyer of the Year award, Kreger was also listed in the 2014 Best Lawyers in America for Litigation-Construction. Kreger represents parties in complex construction claims and disputes, including state and federal litigation, and is on the American Arbitration Association’s Panel of Construction Neutrals. He joined Perkins Coie in 1984 following a federal clerkship in Anchorage. 

Eric Gettis will be joining the SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium as the new director of Practice Management beginning Jan. 13. Gettis has more than 20 years of healthcare leadership and has gained broad and varied experience with Lourdes Health Network during his service to the System. Since 2008, he has served as their director of Physician Practices where he had oversight for 120 employees and 37 physicians in clinics providing urgent care, family practice, internal medicine, pediatrics, ENT, GI, general surgery, obstetrics, urology, pulmonology and neurology services. During his tenure with Lourdes Health Network he has managed outpatient mental health and adult ambulatory service as well as his most recent Practice Management post.  

The Public Relations Society of America, Alaska Chapter, elected new board members for 2014. The newly elected board members and officers include Heather Cavanaugh, APR, president; Heidi Embley, president-elect; Sandra Yi-Fuller, secretary; Angela Gonzalez, treasurer; Sarah Erkmann, board (two-year term); Kristin Helvey, APR, board (two-year term); Amy Slinker, board (two-year term); and Michelle Renfrew, APR, board (one-year term). Board members with remaining terms in 2014 include JJ Harrier; Cassidy Davis; Michelle Egan, APR; Gary Scott, ethics officer; Nance Larsen, APR, Assembly delegate; and Amy Jennings Burnett, assembly delegate.

Thompson & Co. Public Relations recently expanded its Anchorage and New York teams with the addition of Megan Alletson, Emily McLaughlin and Tara Nokelby who were hired as account coordinators. In addition, the agency promoted Bri Gordon to junior account executive and Emily Kurn to art director and junior account executive. Alletson, born and raised in Alaska, recently earned her bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Arizona with a minor in sociology. Alletson first started at Thompson & Co. Public Relations as a summer intern while still in college and was hired as a full-time account coordinator at the agency’s New York office upon her graduation. McLaughlin and Nokelby joined Thompson & Co.’s Anchorage team as interns in early fall 2013. Nokelby holds a bachelor’s degree in communications with an emphasis in public relations from Suffolk University in Boston, Mass. McLaughlin earned her bachelor’s degree in journalism and public communications from the University of Alaska Anchorage. Both have recently been hired as full-time account coordinators in the Anchorage office. Gordon and Kurn have risen through the agency ranks. Since joining Thompson & Co. in July 2011 as an account coordinator, Gordon has worked primarily on the agency’s State of Alaska Tourism account coordinating and chaperoning numerous press trips; planning the annual Alaska Media Road Show in Santa Barbara; copywriting and mastering the agency’s press list. Kurn joined the agency in February 2013 as an account coordinator and soon began contributing to new business efforts by designing winning RFPs as well as client newsletters, collateral materials and logos. Kurn also manages social media content, writes and edits press releases and coordinates numerous client events.

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