Non-profit

Alaska Center

Website:

akcenter.org

Location:

ANCHORAGE, AK

Tax ID:

92-0090065

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(4)

Budget (2016):

Revenue: $256,888
Expenses: $307,947
Assets: $152,996

Formation:

Early 1970s

Type:

Environmental Advocacy Group

Formerly:

Alaska Center for the Environment

Executive Director:

Polly Carr

The Alaska Center (previously called The Alaska Center for the Environment) is a left-of-center environmental advocacy group based in Alaska. The group advocates for automatic voter registration, a carbon tax, mandating 50 percent “renewable” energy statewide by 2025, expanded taxes on oil and natural gas, and other environmentalist policies. [1] [2] The Alaska Center also opposes the construction of Pebble Mine, a major strategic minerals project opposed by many environmentalist groups. [3]

The Alaska Center reports its top three donors are the Sixteen Thirty Fund, League of Conservation Voters, and Tides Advocacy Fund, all 501(c)(4) left-of-center advocacy groups. [4] The Alaska Center also has a 501(c)(3) sister organization, the Alaska Center Education Fund.

Background

The Alaska Center was originally founded in the early 1970s as the Alaska Center for the Environment. One of its co-founders was Helen Nienhueser, an environmental activist. [5] The Alaska Center for the Environment and its sister organization Trailside Discovery Camp merged with the Alaska Conservation Voters and the Alaska Youth for Environmental Action. [6]

Advocacy Efforts

The Alaska Center campaigns for a number of left-of-center policy efforts including automatic voter registration, voter education, and vote-by-mail policies. The group wants state policies which would automatically register Alaskans to vote. [7] Its “voter education” campaign seeks to educate environmentalist activists about how the government institutions of Alaska function and encourages other advocacy groups to work alongside the Alaska Center. [8] It also promotes vote-by-mail policies; the group assists voters with voting via mail in local and state elections. [9]

The Alaska Center maintains a program, “In Juneau,” which is focused on current policy proposals in sessions of the Alaskan state legislature. [10]

The group’s advocacy on Climate and Energy has four sub-focuses. “Climate Pledge” is a page on the Alaska Center’s website that allows users to sign a pledge asking local leaders to increase environmentalist-aligned energy investments and reduce carbon emissions. [11]

“C-Pace” refers to the Commercial Property Assessment Energy Efficiency program, which aims at decreasing the costs associated with nontraditional energy. [12]

“Clean Power Happy Hour” is a collection of public forums that advocate for renewable options. [13] The Alaska Center states that their partners in this endeavor are the Renewable Energy Alaska Project (REAP), the NAACP, and Alaska Center for Energy and Power (ACEP). [14]

“Solarize Anchorage” is an initiative to bring low-cost solar panels to Anchorage, Alaska for public and private use, with this initiative being worked on by both The Alaska Center and ACEP. [15]

The “salmon and clean water” campaign has three sub-focuses: Protect Bristol Bay, Stream Restoration, and Yes for Salmon. Protect Bristol Bay is closely linked with the Alaska Center’s lobbying efforts against the construction and operation of the Pebble Mine. [16] Stream Restoration is a broad project directed towards protecting and repairing salmon streams. [17] Yes for Salmon is an overall project to keep the Alaskan salmon industry healthy while protecting salmon streams. [18]

Funding

Although the Alaska Center has stated that their top three donors are the Sixteen Thirty Fund, League of Conservation Voters, and Tides Advocacy Fund, other major donors include the Alaska Conservation Foundation, the Brainerd Foundation, and the Harder Foundation. [19] The Alaska Conservation Foundation has given a total of $3,116,580 from 2003-2016, with the notable gap year of 2012. [20] The Brainerd Foundation has given $713,300 in 1999, 2001-2004, 2006-2013, and 2015. [21] Finally, the Harder Foundation has given $703,000 from 2000-2017 with gap years in 2006 and 2012. [22]

Leadership

Polly Carr has been the executive director of the Alaska Center since 2013. [23] She previously served as rural deputy director for the 2008 U.S. Senate campaign of Mark Begich and as a program officer for the Alaska Conservation Foundation from 2009 to 2013. [24] She also concurrently serves for the Municipality of Anchorage Climate Action Plan’s Advisory Committee. [25]

Board of Directors

Susan Klein has been the board chair for the Alaska Center since 2013 and focuses on clean water and climate change issues. [26]

Key Getty is the board treasurer for the Alaska Center and the Alaska Center Education Fund. [27] She also serves on the boards for Bridge Builders of Anchorage and the National Unification Advisory Council. [28]

Sally Rue has been vice-chair for The Alaska Center since 2018. Before this, she served as special assistant for natural resources in the Alaska Governor’s Office from 1977-1982, and as chief of staff for Lt. Governor Fran Ulmer (D) from 1995-2002. [29] She served as director for the Alaska Initiative for Community Engagement from 2003-2014. [30]

Gavin Dixon is a board member for the Alaska Center and as a project manager for the Division of Environmental Health and Engineering at the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium. [31]

Genivieve Mina has been a board member for the Alaska Center since 2019, and concurrently worked as a communications specialist for the Alaska Primary Care Association, a health policy nonprofit. [32]

Karlin Itchoak is a board member for the Alaska Center and is a partner in ArKtiKa Company, LLC, a consulting firm. [33]

References

  1. “Automatic Voter Registration.” Alaska Center. Accessed May 29, 2019. https://akcenter.org/democracy/automatic-voter-registration/ 
  2. “Climate Action Plan.” Alaska Center. Accessed May 29, 2019. https://akcenter.org/climate-clean-energy/climate-change-action-plan/ 
  3. “Stop Pebble Mine.” Alaska Center. Accessed May 29, 2019. https://akcenter.org/salmon-clean-water/stop-pebble-mine/
  4. Information by Facebook Ad Library: search query “Sixteen Thirty Fund.” Accessed May 28, 2019. Search available here: https://www.facebook.com/ads/library/?active_status=all&ad_type=political_and_issue_ads&country=US&page_ids[0]=227877611392&q=%22sixteen%20thirty%20fund%22 
  5. Wohlforth, Charles. “Alaska Center for the Environment Drops ‘Environment’ from Name. So What Is It For?” Anchorage Daily News. November 03, 2016. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://www.adn.com/opinions/2016/11/02/alaska-center-for-the-environment-drops-environment-from-name-so-what-is-it-for/.
  6. Wohlforth, Charles. “Alaska Center for the Environment Drops ‘Environment’ from Name. So What Is It For?” Anchorage Daily News. November 03, 2016. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://www.adn.com/opinions/2016/11/02/alaska-center-for-the-environment-drops-environment-from-name-so-what-is-it-for/.
  7. “Automatic Voter Registration Information.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://akcenter.org/democracy/automatic-voter-registration/.
  8. “Voter Education.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://akcenter.org/democracy/voter-education/.
  9. “Vote By Mail Information for Alaskans.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://akcenter.org/democracy/vote-mail/.
  10. “The Conservation Choices Made in Juneau.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://akcenter.org/democracy/juneau/.
  11. “Alaskan Climate Pledge to Reduce Your Footprint.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://akcenter.org/climate-clean-energy/climate-pledge/.
  12. “CPACE Is Smart Business for Alaskans.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://akcenter.org/climate-clean-energy/cpace/.
  13. “Clean Power Happy Hour, Forums and Talks.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. http://akcenter.org/climate-clean-energy/clean-power-happy-hour/.
  14. “Clean Power Happy Hour, Forums and Talks.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. http://akcenter.org/climate-clean-energy/clean-power-happy-hour/.
  15. “Solarize Anchorage Campaign.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://akcenter.org/climate-clean-energy/solarize-anchorage/.
  16. “Stop Pebble Mine.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://akcenter.org/salmon-clean-water/stop-pebble-mine/.
  17. “Stream Restoration Projects for Urban and Rural Alaska.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://akcenter.org/salmon-clean-water/stream-restoration/.
  18. “Yes For Salmon.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://akcenter.org/yes-for-salmon/.
  19. Information Provided by FoundationSearch. Alaska Center. Accessed June 26, 2019. www.FoundationSearch.com
  20. Information Provided by FoundationSearch. Alaska Center. Accessed June 26, 2019. www.FoundationSearch.com
  21. Information Provided by FoundationSearch. Alaska Center. Accessed June 26, 2019. www.FoundationSearch.com
  22. Information Provided by FoundationSearch. Alaska Center. Accessed June 26, 2019. www.FoundationSearch.com
  23. “Our Staff.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://akcenter.org/about/our-staff/.
  24. “Our Staff.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://akcenter.org/about/our-staff/.
  25. “Our Staff.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://akcenter.org/about/our-staff/.
  26. “Our Board.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://akcenter.org/about/our-board/.
  27. “Our Board.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://akcenter.org/about/our-board/.
  28. “Our Board.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://akcenter.org/about/our-board/.
  29. “Our Board.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://akcenter.org/about/our-board/.
  30. “Our Board.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://akcenter.org/about/our-board/.
  31. “Our Board.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://akcenter.org/about/our-board/.
  32. “Our Board.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://akcenter.org/about/our-board/.
  33. “Our Board.” The Alaska Center. Accessed June 27, 2019. https://akcenter.org/about/our-board/.
  See an error? Let us know!

Nonprofit Information

  • Accounting Period: December - November
  • Tax Exemption Received: August 1, 1983

  • Available Filings

    Period Form Type Total revenue Total functional expenses Total assets (EOY) Total liabilities (EOY) Unrelated business income? Total contributions Program service revenue Investment income Comp. of current officers, directors, etc. Form 990
    2016 Dec Form 990 $256,888 $307,947 $152,996 $184,724 N $257,346 $0 $61 $38,072
    2015 Dec Form 990 $196,069 $252,832 $74,913 $55,582 N $196,006 $0 $63 $47,748 PDF
    2014 Dec Form 990 $346,709 $384,782 $78,463 $2,369 N $318,099 $0 $72 $26,676 PDF
    2013 Dec Form 990 $268,917 $205,771 $143,507 $29,340 N $261,318 $0 $74 $4,095 PDF
    2012 Dec Form 990 $126,967 $111,678 $54,211 $3,190 Y $75,288 $0 $91 $22,637 PDF
    2011 Dec Form 990 $177,322 $162,468 $35,732 $0 Y $115,820 $0 $99 $31,459 PDF

    Additional Filings (PDFs)

    Alaska Center

    921 W 6TH AVE STE 200
    ANCHORAGE, AK 99501-2029