In Alaska, Environmentally Sustainable Businesses Thriving With Our Help

The Alaska Chapter of The Nature Conservancy is doing some exciting economic development work with an Indigenous partner in Southeast Alaska: Spruce Root. Says Dustin Solberg, Marketing Specialist in Alaska, "We're very proud of this work. We think it's really quite innovative for TNC and we've been at it long enough now to have some wonderful stories to tell."

And stories they've created! Dustin and his team have created videos with Spruce Root to profile the enterprising work of two fisheries businesses that received a helpful boost from a TNC-supported revolving loan fund. The fund is designed to support environmentally sustainable business in the Tongass, an example of smart partnership and innovation to drive our Shared Conservation Agenda forward. Watch the videos below!

Spruce Root, Inc. is a nonprofit lender with a mission to assist Southeast Alaska's people and businesses to reach their full potential through loan capital and support services that promote economic, social/cultural and environmental resiliency. Their partnership with The Nature Conservancy in Alaska developed thanks, in part, to the leadership of Christine Woll, Southeast Alaska program director and the official voice on the program's economic development work. 

"Fishing is important to me because it maintains my heritage, my traditions and family history. It allows me to stay connected to the region and my family. I'm continuing something that's important to me and that's been a part of my entire life," says Dennis Gray Jr., a fisherman for Anthem Fisheries who received a loan from Spruce Root, allowing him to operate for two more years and build a more successful operation in Hoonah, Alaska. As a Tlingit, Dennis valued Spruce Root's identity as a native corporation. 

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