Welcome to NEA-Alaska

NEA-Alaska, an affiliate of the National Education Association, is a union of 12,000+ public education employees.

Our members are teachers, library media specialists, counselors, psychologists, physical and speech therapists, school secretaries, custodians, classroom aides, cafeteria workers, maintenance workers and other support professionals who work in Alaska public schools and facilities. Our diverse association makes us the strongest advocate in Alaska for an excellent public education for every child.
NEA-Alaska exists to be an advocate for an excellent public education for each child in Alaska and to advance the interests of public school employees.

Our members live and work in nearly every community in Alaska. With 67 local associations, including an active NEA-Alaska Retired local, our collective expertise, regional knowledge, and pedagogical excellence is unmatched by any other entity in the state. NEA-Alaska is member led, meaning all policy decisions are made by elected representatives from within our union and adopted through democratic processes.

Our union strives to uphold the rights of educators, enhance learning opportunities for students, and works to build a better Alaska.

Our Mission

NEA-Alaska exists to be an advocate for an excellent public education for each child in Alaska and to advance the interests of public school employees.

NEA-Alaska Bylaws

NEA-Alaska Policy

Our History

NEA-Alaska was founded in 1922 in Ketchikan, when 73 of the Territory’s teachers formed a new organization “to elevate the character and advance the interests of the profession of teaching and to promote the cause of education in the Territory of Alaska.” Over the following years and decades the organization (first known as the Alaska Education Association) addressed issues such as salaries and retirement and legislation that affected schools and teachers.

In 1945 the association saw a major victory, in the passage of the first Alaska Teachers’ Retirement Act. This original law was amended regularly in subsequent years with improvements that made it more actuarially sound. The coming years marked the organization’s push for collective bargaining to improve salaries and working conditions, and increased involvement in the political process. Effective advocacy in Juneau was a constant, and in 1965 the association established the Political Action Committee for Education (PACE). In the mid-1980s NEA-Alaska was strengthened with the extension of full membership rights to Education Support Professionals, or ESPs

Our Leadership

BoardCommitteesStaff

Board of Directors

Tom Klaameyer
NEA-Alaska President
[2024]
Laura Capelle
NEA-Alaska Vice President
[2024]
Kathy Simpler
NEA Director
[2025]
Laura Mulgrew
Region I Director
Juneau EA
[2024]
Sunshine Winn
Region I Director
[2025]
Phyllis Clough
Region II Director
[2025]
Jenn Haugh
Region III Director
Kenai Peninsula EA
[2024]
Josh Girard
Region III Director
Kenai Peninsula ESP
[2025]
Cory Hughes
Region IV Director
Lower Kuskokwim NEA
[2024]
Aletha Duchene
Region IV Director
Northwest Arctic EA
[2025]
Jessica Iglesias
Region V Director
[2025]
Kristen Dullen
Region V Director
Fairbanks EA
[2024]
Michaela Kolerok
Region VI Director
Anchorage EA
[2025]
Barb Clark
Region VI Director
Anchorage EA
[2024#]
Brittany Hanson
Region VI Director
Anchorage EA
[2024]
George Cromer III
Region VI Director
Anchorage EA
[2025]
Misty Dawn Nelson
Region VI Director
Anchorage EA
[2025]
Corey Aist
Region VI Director
Anchorage EA
[2024]
Tim Walters
Region VII Director
Mat Su EA
[2025#]
Chad Swarthout
Region VII Director
Mat Su CEA
[2024]
Vicki Hewitt
Region VII Director
Mat Su EA
[2025#]
Christine Villano
Region R Director
Retired
[2024]
Trena Richardson
Region R Director
Retired
[2025]
Judy Salo
Region R Director
Retired
[2025]
Barb Stek
Region R Director
Retired
[2024]
Susanna Litwiniak
ESP At-Large
Kenai Peninsula ESP
[2025]

[2022]: Term Limit
#: Cannot run for another term

Standing Committees

PACE (Political Action Committee on Education)

President: Tom Klaameyer (2024)
Vice President: Laura Capelle (2024)
NEA Director: Kathy Simpler (2025)

Region I:
Danielle Pratt (2025)
Cheyenne Cuellar (2024)

Region II:
Jeanine Costello (2024)

Region III:
Josh Girard (2025)
Todd Nemyo (2024)

Region IV:
Corey Shepard (2025)
VACANT

Region V:
Jessica Iglesias (2024)
Kim Wallingford (2025)

Region VI:
Afshan Mohammad (2025)
V. Renee Wade (2025)
Lara Ajayi (2024)
Christi Sitz (2025)
Susy Gullickson (2024)
Jessica Cook (2025)

Region VII:
Sean Williams (2024)
Kathleen Yerbich (2025)
Arin Tampke (2025)

Region R:
Pamela Lloyd (2025)
Howard Maxwell (2025)
Ernie Kirby (2024)
Marilyn Pillifant (2024)

Executive Director: Glenn Bafia
Staff Liaison: Matthew Moser

Delegate Assembly Steering and Rules

President: Tom Klaameyer

Region I: Jeannette Sleppy
Region II: Danielle Specht
Region III: Carrie Lunardi
Region IV: Noel Bowe
Region V: Kerry Platzke
Region VI: Christi Sitz, Chair
Region VII: VACANT
Region R: Donna Williams
Staff Liaison: Susie Smythe

Ethnic Minority Affairs Committee
Karen Dullen
Jessica Iglesias
George Cromer, III
Missouri Smyth
Human Rights and Civil Rights Committee

Region I: Dave Nelson
Region II: Phyllis Clough
Region III: Winter Marshall-Allen
Region IV: Aletha Duchene
Region V: Maxine Dibert
Region VI: Rhiana Gay, Misty Nelson
Region VII: Sara Morfin
Region R: Teresa Duncan
Staff Liaison: Joshua Yeh
Board Liaison: George Comer III

NEA-Alaska Staff

Zac Mannix
Executive Director
Anchorage
Helen Pierce
Executive Assistant
Anchorage
K.D. Roope
Chief Financial Officer
Juneau
David Theriault
UniServ Manager
Anchorage
Joel Antes
UNISERV DIRECTOR
Anchorage
Val Baffone
UniServ Director
Anchorage
Nathan Coutsoubos
UniServ Director
Anchorage
Semra Deaner
UniServ Director
Juneau
Hedy Eischeid
UniServ Director
Anchorage
Courtney Eyer
UniServ Director
Anchorage
Grier Hopkins
UniServ Director
Fairbanks
Jessica Minguez
UniServ Director
Anchorage
Monica Southworth
UniServ Director
Juneau
Mike Wenstrup
UniServ Director
Fairbanks
Kristi Baker
Program Coordinator
Anchorage
Jennifer Wright
Program Coordinator
Fairbanks
Lynn Metcalfe
Program Coordinator
Juneau
Makana Bender
Associate Staff
Anchorage
Malina Colon
Associate Staff
Mat-Su
Heather Golbeck
Associate Staff
Mat-Su
Lena Gonzales
Associate Staff
Anchorage
Alex Strickland
Associate Staff
Fairbanks
Matt Moser
Government Relations
Anchorage
Susie Smythe
Program Coordinator
Anchorage
Laura Bartholomae
Digital Media Specialist
Anchorage
Sarah Young
Program Coordinator
Juneau
Ike Culbertson
Technologist
Anchorage