I was born and raised in the Kodiak Archipelago and graduated from S.A.V.E. II secondary school in Anchorage on the Alaska mainland just before I turned 20 years old. Began attending community college when I was 25 and graduated from Westminster college at 30. An original shareholder in the Alaska Native Claims Settlement corporations Koniag, inc., and Leisnoi, inc., I'm also enrolled in the federally recognized Tangirnaq Native Village aka the Woody Island tribe. With pride, I serve the Alutiiq on the board of directors of the Koniag education foundation, an organization that promotes the educational goals and economy of the Koniag Alutiiq and their descendants. I am an assistant professor of Ethnic Studies at the University of Utah. In 2011-2012 I held the prestigious postdoctoral fellowship in American Indian Studies at the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign and was the 2017-2018 Katrin H. Lamon fellowship residential scholar at the School for Advanced Research, in Santa Fe, New Mexico.