Movers and Shakers for Feb. 19
Kumin, an Anchorage architecture firm, has promoted staff architect Sarah Salazar to the position of associate, making her the youngest associate in Kumin’s 40-year history. She joined Kumin in 2010, relocating from New Mexico, where she served as a project manager for the Air Force, managing large-scale military projects from programming through construction. Salazar is the 2017 President of the Alaska Chapter of the American Institute of Architects, and held numerous other executive board positions within AIA Alaska since 2012. Her current work includes Southcentral Foundation Children’s Dental Clinic/Medical Office Building and Parking Garage on the campus of Alaska Native Medical Center. Previous projects include a major renovation of Boney District Courthouse, West High School/Romig Middle School Career Technical Education Additions, and a major expansion of the Ketchikan Shipyard. A licensed architect in Alaska and New Mexico, Salazar received a bachelor’s of architecture degree from the University of Arizona and is also a certified document technologist.
Four new Superior Court judges were appointed to serve the communities of Bethel, Dillingham, Kenai, and Nome. Gov. Bill Walker also announced his selection to fill a vacancy on the Court of Appeals. Nathaniel Peters has been appointed to the Bethel Superior Court. Peters graduated with honors from Ohio Northern University, and has been practicing law in Alaska for almost eight years. He served as a public defender in Palmer and Bethel for six years, and has served as the Bethel District Court Judge since 2014. Christina “Tina” Reigh has been appointed to the Dillingham Superior Court. Reigh graduated magna cum laude from Seattle University Law School in 2003. She moved to Dillingham to work for Alaska Legal Services Corp. in 2004, visiting nearly every village in Bristol Bay as a part of her work. She has served as Dillingham’s Magistrate since 2014. Jennifer Wells has been appointed to the Kenai Superior Court. Wells graduated cum laude from Suffolk University School of Law in 1990. She clerked for Anchorage Superior Court Judge Dana Fabe, and worked as a public defender in Kenai for three years. Since 1994, she has served as a magistrate judge, master, acting district court judge or training judge in communities throughout Alaska. Romano D. DiBenedetto has been appointed to the Nome Superior Court. DiBenedetto has served as a magistrate judge in Fairbanks since 2012, where he presides over family law and probate matters, criminal arraignments and applications for post-conviction relief. He previously served in the Fairbanks District Attorney’s Office and the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office in Chicago. DiBenedetto graduated from Northwestern School of Law in 1993. Tracey Wollenberg has been appointed to the Court of Appeals. Wollenberg is the Deputy Public Defender for the Alaska Public Defender Agency’s Appellate Division, where she oversees statewide appellate litigation for the agency’s criminal and civil cases. Prior to law school, she worked as a financial analyst for Morgan Stanley. Wollenberg graduated from Columbia University Law School in 2005, and clerked for Alaska Court of Appeals Chief Judge David Mannheimer.
Patricia C. Miller is First National Bank Alaska’s new vice president and director of Human Resources. Highlights from Miller’s previous 26 years of experience in human resources before joining First National include leading the expansion of an Alaska-based business to 7,000 employees in 45 states and seven countries. She also successfully negotiated more than 37 union contracts.
American Income Life Insurance Company-Altig has appointed Joanna Hansen to regional general agent in the Anchorage office. After earning her bachelor’s degree at the University of Alaska, Hansen joined AIL-Altig in August of 2015. Hansen was put on the fast track to management and in less than five months, she was appointed to master general agent in January 2016. That following August, she was selected to attend the AIL-Altig Leadership Society Conference that accelerated her to being appointed regional general agent in February 2017.
Andrew B. Erickson has joined the Landye Bennett Blumstein LLP Anchorage office as an associate attorney. Erickson will focus his practice on Alaska Native law, litigation and bankruptcy. He received a bachelor’s degree from The University of Montana, a master’s degree in environmental policy the University of Oxford, and a juris doctor from Lewis &Clark Law School. He is a 2007 Harry S. Truman Scholar. He recently served as the state’s representative for Defenders of Wildlife and was an independent consultant for organizations such as the Center for Biological Diversity, Cook Inletkeeper, and Greater Southeast Alaska Conservation Community. Erickson is a former law clerk for the Alaska Supreme Court and worked as Miles Conservation Fellow in the office of U.S. Sen. Max Baucus.