Joel Isaak’s family is from the village of Ch’aghałnikt (Point Possession) and currently lives in Soldotna. His Dena’ina name, Łiq’a yes, translates to salmon skin which relates to his pursuits of learning fish skin sewing. Joel is an artist, educator and lifelong learner. He uses art to uncover understanding of working in an educational environment where he combines the Western education model with traditional Alaska Native ways of life. Language work inspires Joel’s artistic practice and education methodology. He uses multi-cultural communication as a medium to aid in language revitalization. Art has served as a safeguard for him and a medium for generating understanding and communicating hard truths to a wide range of audiences to help facilitate wellness.
Ruth Miller is a Dena’ina woman born and raised in Dgheyay Kaq (Anchorage). Her Alaskan family is from the Lake Clark region with ties in Bristol Bay, and she is the Climate Justice Organizer for Native Movement. She participates in many dialogues nationally and internationally on climate justice, indigenous rights, and tearing down racial capitalism. She is particularly passionate about her work on radical compassion.