VACANT

Project Director

DAVINA CARL

Transcriber/Translator

Calista Corporation

Calista (pronounced Cha-lis-ta) is the second largest Native Regional Corporation in Alaska. In the Yup'ik Eskimo language, the name “Calista” translates to “Cali” which means work and “ista” which means someone or something which does. Calista Corporation’s land entitlement is approximately 6.5 million acres in Southwestern Alaska, in the Yukon-Kuskokwim River Delta and the Kuskokwim Mountains physiographic regions. Nearly 5 million acres of the total entitlement is now conveyed to Calista and its 56 villages.

The economic base in the Calista Region is very limited. Commercial fishing, construction, trapping and arts have provided residents with some earnings but unemployment in the Region still remains high. Because of sparse employment opportunities, many families do not have the income to pay for their children’s college or vocational school education. This creates a hindrance for many students who are academically fit to further their education or career goals.

The U.S. Census Bureau recently reported Yup’ik, with approximately 19,000 speakers, is the second most commonly spoken native language in the U.S. Only five percent of Alaska Native and American Indians speak a Native language with 65 percent of native speakers living in Alaska, Arizona or New Mexico. Language is an important part of culture and preserving our culture is critical to keeping our communities healthy and vibrant. The Calista Elders Council was formed to help protect and preserve our Yup’ik, Cup’ik and Athabascan cultures. It is our traditions, our heritage, our customs and our cultures that define us as a people, helping us to grow and be successful in our personal and community lives.

Anguyagtem naaqistai, apqiitnek U.S. Census Bureau-t qanertut Yugtun-gguq qantulit maa-i yuinaunrita’ar tiissitsaat cipluku amllertariniluki. Alaska-m nutem yuini Ingqilini-llu Yugtun qantulit amlleqrita kinguqlirraqaa. Alaskam nutem yuini Ingqilini-llu kiingan five percent-aat maa-i nutemllaq qaneryarateng atularaat. Cali-ll’ nutum qantulini taukuni sixty-five percent-ait nutem qantulit Alaska-mi, Arzona-mi New Mexico-mi-llu uitatuluteng. Qaneryaput arcaqalriaruuq man’a-llu yuucimta piciryaramta-llu tamanritlerkaa arcaqalriaruuq nunamta assirluki eglertellerkaat pitekluku. Calista Elders Council-aaq calillgutekluku Calista Heritage Foundation-aaq piurtellruuq qaunqellerkaa maryartellerkaa, tamavkanritengnaqlerkaa-llu pitekluku Yupiit/Cupiit/Ingqiliit-llu yuuyaraat, piciryaraat, qaneryaraat-llu. Yuuyaraput piciryaraput-llu wangkuta arcaqalriaruuq wangkuta pikngamteggu ikayuutnguciqngan-llu wangkutnun yuungnaqlemteni uitanqegciluta piluaqerluta-llu.

Our Languages
 

our vision:

The economic base in the Calista Region is very limited. Commercial fishing, construction, trapping and arts have provided residents with some earnings but unemployment in the Region still remains high. Because of sparse employment opportunities, many families do not have the income to pay for their children’s college or vocational school education. This creates a hindrance for many students who are academically fit to further their education or career goals.

Economy

The Calista Region is located in Southwest Alaska in the Yukon Kuskokwim Delta. Calista’s 13,000 Shareholders are of Cup’ik, Yup’ik and Athabascan descent.


Many Shareholders still speak their traditional languages and practice a year-round subsistence lifestyle of hunting, fishing and trapping. The subsistence way of life represents not only a means of making a living, but also a cherished way of life vital to the survival of the Alaska Native cultures.

Region

The Calista Education and Culture, Inc. (“CECI”; formally Calista Heritage Foundation, Inc.) was established in 1980 as an Alaska Native owned non-profit corporation, recognized by IRS as a Section 501(c)(3) charitable organization providing educational scholarships to Calista Corporation (“Calista”) shareholders and descendants.  The CECI Board of Directors includes seven board members, three of which are Elders of the Calista Region.  CECI provides educational and vocational scholarships, conducts cultural summer camps, provides burial assistance, and engages in various fundraising activities.  Since its inception, CECI has paid in excess of $4 million in scholarships to its shareholders and descendants. 

In 2014, after a 20 year history of interacting and working together, the Calista Elders Council, Inc. merged with the former Calista Heritage Foundation to form what is now Calista Education and Culture, Inc.  The Calista Elders Council was established in 1991 as a non-profit organization representing 1,300 Yup’ik traditional bearers of the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta in Southwest Alaska.  Today, CECI remains the major research organization in the Calista Region and has been very active in documenting traditional knowledge of the Yup’ik people. 

Organization

Qigcikiyaraq      Tuvqakiyaraq      Elitnauryaraq     Ellangqerrluni Yuuyaraq      Ilakuyucarak              Ikayurtaryaraq

ANN FIENUP-RIORDAN

Anthropologist

ALICE REARDEN

Transcriber/Translator

MARK JOHN

Cultural Advisor

MICHELLE MCGLASHAN

Program Coordinator

REA M BAVILLA

President/CEO

EARL SAMUELSON, SR.

Treasurer


FLORA PAUKAN

NICK ANDREW, SR.


ANDREW GUY

Secretary


BRENDA PACARRO


MOSES WHITE, SR.

Vice Chairman

JOHNNY EVAN

Chairman

Our Board of Directors

Our Team

MARIE MEADE

Transcriber/Translator

CYNTHIA BALDWIN

Project Director

VACANT

Camp Manager

VACANT

Admin. Asst. III

Our Culture
 

The Yup’ik, Cup’ik and Athabascan cultures of the Calista Region are the most preserved in Alaska. The majority of the residents within the Region still speak their traditional languages, and most still practice a subsistence lifestyle; their culture is a primary characteristic of their economy. It is also a cherished way of life, vital to the survival of Alaska Native cultures.

The economic base in the Calista Region is very limited. Commercial fishing, construction, trapping and arts have provided residents with some earnings but unemployment in the Region still remains high. Because of sparse employment opportunities, many families do not have the income to pay for their children’s college or vocational school education. This creates a hindrance for many students who are academically fit to further their education or career goals.

Who We Are

“We call ourselves Yupiit, “Real People.”  In our language yuk means “person” or “human being.”  Then we add pik, meaning “real” or “genuine.”  We are the real people.”

-Paul John, Calista Elder

Our People of the Calista region of Alaska will live and share our Yuuyaraq traditional way of being, value education, provide for our families, contribute to the well-being of our communities and set a good example for future generations.

our core values:

    Respect                      Share                Teach and Study                    Awareness                    Family/Community    Being Helpful and Supportive

OLIVIA AGNES

Admin. Asst. III