Our Team

Locals who believe in Alaska.

Our Team

Locals know what Alaska needs to thrive. Our team is built of Alaskans dedicated to unleashing the true potential of Alaska. With diverse backgrounds, a wealth of experience, and a wide range of skills, we’re able to drive change and create new opportunities that transform our future.

Erin Dovichin

Managing Partner

Erin is the Managing Partner at Alaska Venture Fund. Before starting Alaska Venture Fund, Erin was the program officer for the Alaska portfolio of the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation’s Wild Salmon Ecosystems Initiative.

Prior to the foundation, Erin was the associate state director of The Nature Conservancy in Alaska where she led the conservation team’s efforts to protect polar marine, arctic wetland, temperate rainforest and wild salmon systems in Alaska. She lives in Chugiak, Alaska, with her husband Paul Andrews.  

Erin is the Managing Partner at Alaska Venture Fund. Before starting Alaska Venture Fund, Erin was the program officer for the Alaska portfolio of the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation’s Wild Salmon Ecosystems Initiative. Prior to the foundation, Erin was the associate state director of The Nature Conservancy in Alaska where she led the conservation team’s efforts to protect polar marine,...  

Helena Jacobs


Helena, Koyukon Athabascan, was born in Fairbanks with ancestral ties to Ruby and Kokrines, and grew up throughout Alaska in Ruby, Anchorage, Juneau, Nome, Utqiagvik, Fairbanks and Sitka. She now lives and works in Anchorage on Dena’ina land where she and her husband are raising their family. Her work focuses on collective impact approaches to positive social and systemic change, elevating equity and access, and wellness and wellbeing within the Alaska Native community.  

Helena, Koyukon Athabascan, was born in Fairbanks with ancestral ties to Ruby and Kokrines, and grew up throughout Alaska in Ruby, Anchorage, Juneau, Nome, Utqiagvik, Fairbanks and Sitka. She now lives and works in Anchorage on Dena’ina land where she and her husband are raising their family. Her work focuses on collective impact approaches to positive social and systemic change, elevating...  

AlexAnna Salmon


AlexAnna Salmon is President of the Igiugig Village Council. She is of Yup’ik and Aleut descent and was raised in the village of Igiugig, Alaska.

In 2008, AlexAnna graduated from Dartmouth College with a dual Bachelor of Arts degree in Native American Studies and Anthropology. After graduating, she returned to work for the Igiugig Tribal Village Council where she was elected President and, until 2016, also held the role of Administrator. AlexAnna serves as a member of the Igiugig Native Corporation board, which is responsible for the stewardship of 66,000 tribal acres. She also serves on the Lake and Peninsula Borough Planning Commission, the Nilavena Tribal Health Consortium, and is a member of the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History’s Advisory Board. She received her Master’s Degree in Rural Development from the University of Alaska Fairbanks in 2021.

In her work as President of the Igiugig Village Council, AlexAnna has been a driving force behind the community’s efforts to generate its own energy from renewable sources. In 2015, she was invited to President Obama’s roundtable discussion with Alaska Native leaders and was praised by Sen. Dan Sullivan in 2017 on the Senate floor for helping strengthen her community and making it an incredible place to live. AlexAnna loves raising her kids in the subsistence way of life, revitalizing Indigenous languages, and traveling.  

AlexAnna Salmon is President of the Igiugig Village Council. She is of Yup’ik and Aleut descent and was raised in the village of Igiugig, Alaska. In 2008, AlexAnna graduated from Dartmouth College with a dual Bachelor of Arts degree in Native American Studies and Anthropology. After graduating, she returned to work for the Igiugig Tribal Village Council where she was elected President and, until...  

Matt Rafferty


Matt Rafferty is a Partner at Alaska Venture Fund. He came to Alaska to explore its wild places but has stayed because of its inspiring people. With two decades of conservation experience in Alaska, Matt is currently focused on elevating issues related to Indigenous sovereignty and creating equal access to philanthropy as the moral, just, and most effective way to ensure stewardship of Alaska’s lands and waters and provide resiliency from climate change for people and the planet.

Before joining Alaska Venture Fund, Matt was the Project Director of the Alaska Engagement Partnership and Alaska Wild Salmon Fund, served as a Program Officer at the Alaska Conservation Foundation, and was the Deputy Director of the Alaska Public Radio Network. He is an Alaskan Salmon Fellow and graduate of the University of Massachusetts and Leadership Anchorage Program. An avid builder of community, Matt helped launch, grow and host Arctic Entries, a monthly storytelling event, and co-created and hosted the Borealis Bluegrass Breakdown, a weekly radio program, for 10 years.

Matt currently lives in Juneau, Alaska, and recognizes it as the past and present lands of the T’aaku Kwáan and Áak’w Kwáan Tlingit people. He is thankful for their stewardship and seeks to learn from their example.  

Matt Rafferty is a Partner at Alaska Venture Fund. He came to Alaska to explore its wild places but has stayed because of its inspiring people. With two decades of conservation experience in Alaska, Matt is currently focused on elevating issues related to Indigenous sovereignty and creating equal access to philanthropy as the moral, just, and most effective way to ensure stewardship of Alaska’s...  

Jonella Larson White


As a lifelong Alaskan, Jonella/Ququngaq (Yupik) recognizes and shares an appreciation for the complex challenges we face as Alaskans and is committed to using her experience and knowledge to help others meet the needs of their communities. Jonella was born and raised in Nome with strong family ties to Savoonga on St. Lawrence Island. She and her children are tribal citizens of the Native Village of Savoonga. Her love of Yupik art, culture, and ideology led her to the University of Alaska Fairbanks where she earned her Bachelor of Arts in Alaska Native and Rural Development with an emphasis in cultural documentation and community planning and to Harvard University where she earned her Master in Liberal Arts in museum studies. She is committed to working with leadership on issues and impacts related to climate and social justice, sustainable communities, and cultural expression.  

As a lifelong Alaskan, Jonella/Ququngaq (Yupik) recognizes and shares an appreciation for the complex challenges we face as Alaskans and is committed to using her experience and knowledge to help others meet the needs of their communities. Jonella was born and raised in Nome with strong family ties to Savoonga on St. Lawrence Island. She and her children are tribal citizens of the Native Village...  

Jacob Shercliffe

Program Associate

Jacob grew up in Alaska and is a graduate of the University of Alaska Anchorage and a Harry S Truman Scholar. Prior to working with the Alaska Venture Fund, Jacob was a part of the Alaska Fellows Program researching sustainable economic development opportunities in-state. Jacob also worked on producing the Anchorage Climate Action Plan and a greenhouse gas emissions analysis for the city. He is passionate about creating a more sustainable future for communities across Alaska.  

Jacob grew up in Alaska and is a graduate of the University of Alaska Anchorage and a Harry S Truman Scholar. Prior to working with the Alaska Venture Fund, Jacob was a part of the Alaska Fellows Program researching sustainable economic development opportunities in-state. Jacob also worked on producing the Anchorage Climate Action Plan and a greenhouse gas emissions analysis for the city. He is...  

Zoé Styron

Communications Director

Zoé Styron is Alaska Venture Fund’s Communications Director. She has worked with organizations across Alaska to champion local brands and amplify causes committed to protecting Alaska’s unique way of life for future generations.

Before joining Alaska Venture Fund, Zoé was Strategy Director at Element Agency, Communications Director at The Salmon Project, and led communications at AlphaSights, one of the world’s fastest-growing professional services firms. Zoé has lived and worked in Asia, Europe, and the USA, and holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Nottingham, and a Masters of Science from the University of London, UK. Zoé lives on Dena’ina land in Anchorage, Alaska, with her husband and two daughters.  

Zoé Styron is Alaska Venture Fund’s Communications Director. She has worked with organizations across Alaska to champion local brands and amplify causes committed to protecting Alaska’s unique way of life for future generations. Before joining Alaska Venture Fund, Zoé was Strategy Director at Element Agency, Communications Director at The Salmon Project, and led communications at...  

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