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About Us

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Putting Alaskan creativity to work.


Northern Culture Exchange (NCE) was incorporated as a 501c3 in 2012 to work as an umbrella organization for a number of like minded Alaskan and circumpolar creative art and education programs. Through pooling programming and management resources, NCE programs keep costs low and  the fun factor high, furthering communication between us, ensuring sustainability and accelerating the growth and impact of each participant program.


Anne Thomas Beesley - Chair 

Anne has a broad range of experience working for diverse organizations, and is an  effective problem solver. She works as a Senior Environmental Coordinator for Alyeska Pipeline Service Company, and has over ten years of supervising the NCE Board of Directors. Anne is inspired daily by the organization’s work, and its commitment to community, music, and support of Alaskan artists. Anne has a Bachelor of Science degree in Marine Biology from Humboldt State University and has worked as a biologist, researcher, and consultant for Educational Institutions, Government Agencies, and Environmental non-profits.  She attended Alaska Pacific University and Harvard Extension School completing coursework in Strategic Leadership, Organizational Development, and Sustainability with an emphasis on business and organizational metrics. In her free time, Anne likes to hike, fish, collect berries and wild plants, garden, watch sci-fi movies, and enjoy Alaskan seafood.

Marieke Heatwole - Treasurer, Vice Chair

Marieke is a board-certified Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner with a master’s degree from Vanderbilt University.  She has been an advocate of mental health her entire adult life and served on the Alaska Mental Health Board. Marieke is also a metal sculptor, bike enthusiast and mother of two.She is passionate about helping people find their own path to well-being. Marieke is a founding board member of Northern Culture Exchange, and formerly served as board director for Trailer Art Center, MtView.

Yngvil Vatn Guttu - Secretary

Yngvil has been living in Alaska since 2002, producing theatre and music events and building community

and networks on the arts scene. A popular performer, teacher, coach and keynote speaker, Yngvil's work with exceptional ability learners of all ages has earned her recognition and affection, as has her ongoing mentorship of students and colleagues. Yngvil has been a part of the online learning movement since the beginning, teaching thousands of students worldwide. She creates media and educational content through her companies Khione Media and iNorsk, and collaborates with leading global innovators in online learning and creative community development. Yngvil has a Masters Degree in music from New York University and  Bachelor Degrees in Theatre (Bruford College, London UK) and Language Teaching (University in Bergen, Norway). She has toured extensively to major venues in Europe and North America, with award winning productions. She is a two-times recipient of the Rasmuson Individual Artist Award in 2005 and 2014 and received national recognition as Jazz Hero in 2022 (American Jazz Journalist Association). Yngvil co- founded NCE in 2012 to develop and fund likeminded Alaskan creatives. She is also a board member for Alaska Jazz Workshop, Access Alaska and Institute of the North. Yngvil strives to honor creativity, kindness and strength in all aspects of life.

Michael Dickerson - Director

Michael Dickerson is an Alaskan composer, educator, and writer with an interest in the relationships between people and place. Michael co-founded an interdisciplinary arts education program called The Northern Pen, composed a number of new works for soloists in North and South America, and collaborated across disciplines in a handful of multimedia projects in Alaska.

Michael holds a B.A., magna cum laude graduating honors in Music and Philosophy from Middlebury College, VT; an M.M. in Music Composition from University of Northern Iowa; and is currently pursuing an M.A.T. in Elementary Education at University of Alaska Southeast.

Michael's recent creative projects include a novel, presented at the UAS Power and Privilege Symposium, a series of compositions for abandoned military structures in rural Alaska (supported by a Rasmuson Individual Artist Award) and orchestral works premiered by the Symphony Orchestra i Bogotá, Colombia.



Yngvil Vatn Guttu - Founder, CEO, Main Program Liaison

Lisa Hawkins - Social Media Manager

Lauren Petersen - Systems and Office Manager

Vicky Parks - Bookkeeper, Grant Manager 



Marian Call -  Program Director

Yngvil Vatn Guttu - Associate Program Director
Lauren Petersen - Administrator Systems Manager
Lisa Hawkins - Administrator, Web, Social Media and Graphics

Theresa Watt - Data Visualization
Emily Anderson - Administrative Assistant
Emily Tallman - Logo 

Richard Cooper - 
Associate Producer (Frostline)

Yngvil Vatn Guttu - Associate Producer, Anchor (NCE)
Lisa Hawkins - Associate Producer, Anchor (NCE)

Hannah Pratt - Video Director
Derek Haukaas - Audio Producer
Courtney Dean, Rowan Pickard - Camera crew/ Video Editing
Emily Tallman - Logo 


Yngvil Vatn Guttu - Contributing publisher
Marian Call - Contributing editor
Michael Dickerson - Contributing editor

Yngvil Vatn Guttu - Program Lead
Michael Dickerson - Associate Program Lead

To Be Updated :



Lauren Petersen - Program Director
Abi Sparkman, Deven Lind,  Philip Giannulis - Instructors

Advisory Board - Yngvil Vatn Guttu, Lisa Hawkins, Cameron Cartland, Marian Call

Lisa Hawkins - Assoc Director Programming, Promotion
Lauren Petersen - Assoc Director, Systems, Logistics
Yngvil Vatn Guttu - Founder, Development, Outreach
Karl Wilhelmi - Bookkeeping, Membership, Merchandise
Derek Haukaas - Tech Director

Michael Dickerson - Assoc. Director, Programming, Hospitality

Scott Jensen - Videographer, Live streaming

Lucy Peckham - Audio Support

Michael Powell - Health and Safety

Emily Tallman/Poetica - Communications, Graphic design

Program leads: 
Cameron Cartland, John Damberg Yngvil Vatn Guttu, Lucy Peckham, Karl Wilhelmi



Emily Tallman, Alaska Graphic Design


Both Ears Audio

Peter Ratner Production


Frostline Studios

Jensen Hall Creative

Alaska Jazz Workshop

Alaska State Council on the Arts

Anchorage Arts Alliance

Anchorage Concert Association

Anchorage Museum

Bear Tooth Theatre

Bunnell Street Art Center, Homer

Cafecito Bonito
Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies

The Cove
Denali Arts Council

Frostline Studios

Homer Art Council

Juneau Arts and Humanities Council

The Nave

Sound Diplomacy

Spenard Farmers' Market

University of Alaska, Anchorage

Yerba Buena Arts Center, San Francisco


Alaska Public Media-KSKA

KBBI - Homer Public Radio

KNBA - Koanic Broadcast Corp.

KONR - Anchorage 
KTOO - Juneau

Anchorage PRESS (Wick Communications)


NCE partners with individual artists and new initiatives
putting funds in the hands of artist entrepreneurs. This is how we ensure a vibrant art and culture scene -

2023-4 fiscal partners include:

Alaska Electronic Orchestra - concert series

BIPOC seed fund - 

Come Sunday / theatre performance production

Niuget / yupik traditional music recording

place.ment / summer youth arts workshop

Parlor In The Round/Well Rounded Arts - interactive music event series 

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