Alumni Board of Directors
Roberta Stell, President
In her own words: “As a retired educator and one who has a vested interest in the well-being of the University of Alaska Southeast, I feel I can contribute in many ways to the programming and activities of the Alumni Association. I remain knowledgeable and active in educational issues in Alaska and want to see the Alumni Association continue its strengths in numbers of members and in impact on current and future students at UAS. UAS serves students from the around the state and the alumni goals and activities should promote ways alumni from around the state can be involved and benefit from the activities the UAS Alumni & Friends Association.”
Karen Polley, Vice President
Karen Polley has worked in public education in Alaska since moving to Alaska in the late 1960’s. She has worked for the Juneau-Douglas School District, the Alaska Department of Education, Southeast Regional Resource Center, and the University of Alaska Southeast. She retired in 2005 after serving as the Campus Director in Ketchikan for five years. She graduated from Eastern Washington State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Home Economics and a Bachelor of Arts in Home Economics Education. She received a Master’s Degree in Secondary Education from the University of Alaska, Juneau in 1978. She has been a teacher, education administrator, political consultant, grant writer, small business entrepreneur, licensed boat captain and tour operator. She currently operates her own jewelry manufacturing business Stone Soup Alaska Designs. She has been active in professional and civic organizations including the Alaska Home Economics Association, the Alaska Vocational Association, Rotary 2000, and is a lifetime member in the University of Alaska Southeast Alumni Association. Karen resides in Juneau, Alaska, and has received awards from her professional associations for leadership and service. She spends the summers at her cabin near Pelican, Alaska.
Kristie Balovich, Treasurer
A Minnesota native, Kristie spent several summers working in the fishing industry in Sitka before permanently making Alaska her home in 1991. In 1995 she moved to Juneau with her husband Scott and started her career with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Alaska Region of National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS). Over the last 23 years, Kristie has held several positions for the NMFS Alaska Region and now holds the Alaska Regional Budget Officer position within the Management and Operations Division. She is responsible for the yearly execution of a multi-million dollar budget and oversees the federal grants, procurement and cost recovery programs. Last year Kristie was awarded "Federal Employee of the year" by the Juneau Federal Executive Association. Like many UAS students, Kristie worked full time and pursued her degree at a part-time pace. She graduated in 2010 with a B.B.A in Accounting from UAS.
Kristie is a passionate advocate for continuing education and supporting the community of Juneau. She spent over a decade serving on the Gold Creek Child Development Center Board, Gastineau Channel Little League Board and was a member of the Gastineau Elementary Site Council. She believes knowledge exists both within the university and the community and by creating strategic programs linking the two adds greater synergy and richness to existing teaching and research programs as well as providing tangible benefits to our community. As a member of the UASAA Board of Directors, Kristie understands the value and power of networking and looks forward to fostering positive community connections and furthering the mission of the Alumni Association.
Originally from Los Angeles, Casey transferred to UAS as an undergraduate in 2015. Casey graduated from UAS with a B.A. in Social Science in 2017 and is currently a candidate in UAS' MPA program. Casey is currently the Mine Training Coordinator and first-year advisor at the UAS School of Career Education where he is responsible for coordinating the University's mine training program and "Pathway to Mining". Previously, Casey worked for the Office of Senator Cathy Giessel as a UAS Legislative Intern, focusing on natural resources and education.
Casey would like to serve on the UAS Alumni & Friends Board of Directors to positively contribute to UAS, Juneau, and Southeast Alaska. He plans to work closely with the amazing network of UAS alumni and friends that add so much character and value to our university, town, and region.
Originally from Minnesota, “the Land of Ten Thousand Lakes”, Nathan first experienced Alaska working in Skagway over the summer after high school in 2003. He is a veteran who served six honorable years with two deployments in Iraq (one with the 3/297th Alaska National Guard). His dedication to his service was rewarded with both an Army Achievement and Good Conduct Medals. Nathan received a B.A. in English (with Minors in Philosophy and Tlingít) in 2017 from UAS and is currently finishing his last courses in the UAS Master of Public Administration program. He has been a champion of student club activities at UAS, serving as the President of the Philosophy Club, Vice President of the Flying University, and Vice President of Campus Conservatives.
Nathan’s contribution to UAS Alumni & Friends is defined by his ability to overcome obstacles and to serve others. He served two years in Lemon Creek Correctional Center, nine months at a halfway home, and four years on parole. In prison he set out to change his life. He enrolled in addiction classes and took self-help educational courses. When he received parole for good behavior his first action was to enroll at UAS. He is the first person in his family to achieve a college degree and has remained clean for 10 years. Nathan thanks the education he received at UAS for his rehabilitation and wishes to support future students at UAS discover their passion.
Dr. Karen Carey serves as Chancellor at the University of Alaska Southeast (UAS), Chancellor Carey provides strategic leadership in fulfilling UAS’ mission, including budget development, academic planning and program assessments, student and enrollment services, administrative services, and community relations.
Carey has served on national and international academic boards, including the National Association of School Psychologists, the International Association of School Psychologists, and served as Alaska’s representative on the Executive Committee of the Western Academic Leadership Forum, part of WICHE (Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education). She has served in many capacities over her career working to insure social justice for underrepresented groups in education settings.
Karen has two grown step-children with her late husband Allan and four grandchildren. Karen loves Southeast Alaska, and enjoys attending the symphony, Perseverance Theatre, a variety of arts activities in Juneau, and the fantastic outdoors.
Greg Lange was introduced to the grandeur of Juneau by his mother, Nancy (McDowell) Lange, who was born and raised in Juneau and has had family in the area since 1928. He graduated from Juneau-Douglas High School and UAJ (now UAS), a true home-town boy. While at UAJ, he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting (1984) while working for the Department of Public Safety as an Accounting Clerk.
Greg became a teacher in 1995, and has been in the education field ever since. He is very excited to be an active alum working directly with UAS’ newly-established advisory committee for the UA College of Education. He is currently a high school teacher in Edmonds, WA presenting “math renewal” to struggling and challenged freshman and sophomores.
Greg has also carried his Juneau and Eaglecrest-bred love of the mountains and outdoors into his professional work through programs designed to introduce his students to the snow. For 12 years, he worked with a ski bus company that coordinated and transported almost 600 Seattle middle and high school students to local ski areas on Friday nights. Finally, remaining a torch-bearer for the spirit of Juneau, Greg has been active in coordinating the Annual Seattle-based Juneau-Douglas Picnic each July since 2007, which is in its 77th year.
Serving on the UAS Alumni Association Board of Directors allows Greg to positively contribute to UAS, Juneau, and Southeast Alaska through active engagement with UAS staff and alumni and friends, who add so much vitality to the university and region.
Since graduating from UAS in 2001 with a Master of Arts in Teaching, Julie has worked with the Juneau School District in various teaching positions. Most of her career has been as an Elementary School Librarian. Currently, Julie is the Grant Coordinator for the 21st Century Community Learning Center Grants, which provides after school academic and enrichment activities for Juneau’s youth. Julie has a business degree from UAS, and a long while ago worked in the Egan Library for many years in various positions, including Circulation Supervisor. Julie raised her family in Juneau and is now enjoying two young grandchildren. There are many ways to give back to our community and since UAS has been a major part of Julie’s life, she is looking forward to contributing by serving on the Alumni Board.
Sherry grew up in the college community of Pullman Washington, home to Washington State University, and has lived since in communities with one or more colleges or universities. After graduating from WSU with a degree in Education and Foreign Languages she studied at the University of Maryland College Park, receiving her Master’s in Library Science in 1972. From then until she retired in 2010, she worked as a librarian in universities, colleges, a state library, and finally a public library, including serving as Library Director at Fort Lewis College, University of Alaska Southeast, and the Durango Public Library. Each of these positions involved town/gown collaborations and she actively participated in fostering these endeavors. The Alumni & Friends Association strengthens these bonds in our Alaska communities. Given the extreme financial challenges the University is facing, UAS needs our Association’s support to actively build on the hard-won current strengths and continue to grow, change, and deliver excellent educational programs while simultaneously enhancing our communities. Sherry welcomes the opportunity to be part of this effort.