Theresa Arevgaq John: Alaska indigenous governance through traditions and cultural values


Theresa Arevgaq John is a well known Y’upik cultural advocate and Associate Professor in Indigenous Studies and the Department of Cross-Cultural Studies at the University of Alaska Fairbanks and has intimate knowledge about cultural practices within Indigenous governance.  She advocates for balance between the various forms of governing structures, maintaining strong ties to Native languages, and linking traditional Native practices to community well-being and governance roles.



Native Nations
Resource Type

Native Nations Institute. "Theresa Arevgaq John: Alaska indigenous governance through traditions and cultural values."  Leading Native Nations, Native Nations Institute, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ, November 15, 2016

For a complete transcript, please email us:

Related Resources


Wilson Justin is a cultural ambassador for Cheesh’na Tribal council and serves as a Vice Chair Board of Directors for Mt. Sanford Tribal Consortium.  He relays his expertise and perspective on the intricacies of Indigenous governance in Alaska through adapting cultural traditions, creating a…


A panel discussion with Native leaders in Alaska about the significance of tradition and culture that has influenced their Indigenous governance.

How Athabascan leaders crafted the Tanana Chiefs Conference

It was a concern for their people and for future generations that united Interior tribal leaders 100 years ago this week to hold the first official meeting between Interior Alaska Natives and the U.S. government. The 14 Athabascan men, 10 of whom were chiefs, made the trek from their villages to…

A Fearless Fight Against Historical Trauma, the Yup’ik Way

They were building the young man’s coffin in the front yard when we arrived. Portable construction lights harshly illuminated the scene as men worked in the shadowy dawn that lasts almost until noon out here on the tundra. The men worked steadily and quietly in a manner that suggested front-yard…