2014 Commencement Speaker — Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters Recipient
Dave Hunsaker fills a unique role in the State of Alaska, using his creative expertise to link Native story and tradition to Western literature. His insights and perspectives have brought respect to Alaska’s indigenous people throughout Alaska, nationally and internationally.
Hunsaker’s first script, “Yup’ik Antigone” was developed in Toksook Bay. The play’s international success led to a career as a playwright and screenwriter. Hunsaker developed and was artistic director for the Juneaubased touring Naa Kahidi Theater for ten years. He’s worked with Perseverance Theatre, Theatre in the Rough and legendary filmmakers such as Norman Jewison, Julie Taymor, Carroll Ballard, Mel Gibson, and Leonardo DiCaprio.
Hunsaker facilitates understanding among Western audiences of Alaska Native cultural traditions from around the state, spanning many regions and indigenous groups. His work has gone beyond Alaska’s borders to New York, Washington D.C. and Europe, indicating true leadership in the artistic world.
Hunsaker was adopted by the Luxaax.ádi Clan of the Tlingit Nation, is the recipient of a Governor’s Award for the Arts and a fellowship in the Arts from the State of New York.
His graphic novel, The North End of the World was published by Black Watch Comics in October, 2012. His novel The Circus of the Dark Moon will be published next year.
UAS' 2014 Juneau Commencement will be held May 4 at 2:00 p.m. at the UAS Recreation Center.