A record number of shareholders tuned into a virtual community meeting on Wednesday, May 20, to learn more about Sealaska’s increasing success with its focus on building the long-term health of land, food, water and communities.
Shareholders had the opportunity to ask questions and hear from leadership on the company’s financial performance. Due to health restrictions related to the pandemic, only a limited number of staff and directors were able to meet in person from the Shuká Hít clan house at the Walter Soboleff Building.
Sealaska President and CEO Anthony Mallott provided an overview of the company’s strategic plan and the operational focus, and he shared that Sealaska achieved another year of record ﬁnancial performance in 2019, with $77.8 million in net income. Each of the company’s business units has delivered signiﬁcant year-over-year growth since 2011, and that has enabled increases in shareholder distributions as well as growing investments in education, culture and economic opportunity.
“We’re continuing to focus on building proﬁtable businesses that align with our vision — to protect and preserve our environment for the health of our planet and our people,” said Mallott. “Sealaska is investing our proﬁts in critical community needs and programs that beneﬁt shareholders today and into the future.”
More than 700 separate computer connections (IP addresses) viewed the May 20 virtual community meeting. That number is significantly higher than the number of shareholders who typically attend community meetings in person.
“We have a large and diverse shareholder base. But we all share a powerful desire to stay connected with our culture, our homelands, and each other. Indeed, we are stronger together,” said Sealaska Chair Joe Nelson. “We appreciate your participation throughout the year.”
Among the other topics that were addressed were:
- Honoring Marjorie V. Young: At the start of the webcast, Sealaska shared a photo slideshow featuring longtime Sealaska director Marjorie V. Young, who passed away March 14, 2020, in her home in Craig. Marge served on the board from 1979 to 2009 and held positions as chair and vice chair during her years of service.
- Tribute to Byron Mallott: The webcast also included a video tribute to Byron Mallott, who passed away unexpectedly on Friday, May 8. Over the course of his life, Byron made countless contributions to organizations, businesses and governments. In his distinguished career, Byron held numerous leadership roles, including serving as mayor of Juneau, chairman and CEO at Sealaska, president of the Alaska Federation of Natives, lieutenant governor of Alaska, and leader of the Kwaashk’i Kwáan.
- Overview of board candidates: The community meeting also featured videos from the 11 shareholders who are currently running for the four open seats on the board of directors. Sealaska has endorsed four board nominees. The terms of the four open seats will expire in 2023. Shareholders can learn more about the candidates at the “Election Connection” page on MySealaska.com. During a normal election cycle, Sealaska would hold community meetings during the month of May in several locations where our shareholders reside. Due to the travel restrictions with the coronavirus, we had to cancel those meetings this year.
The webcast was available to all shareholders who have registered with MySealaska.com. About 63 percent of Sealaska shareholders are now using the online shareholder portal. Sealaska encourages all shareholders to register in order to participate in next month’s 2020 annual meeting, which will be held at 1 p.m. Alaska Daylight Time on Saturday, June 27. Shareholders can also ask questions in advance of the meeting by visiting https://www.mysealaska.com/Streams.