Iġġiaġruk Willie Hensley | Iñupiaq | Chair, Founding Member

Iġġiaġruk Willie Hensley
Chair, Founding Member


Willie served 10 years in the Alaska Legislature and was Commissioner of Commerce under Governor Knowles. He is the author of Fifty Miles from Tomorrow: A Memoir of Alaska and the Real People and is a previous Alyeska Pipeline Service Company employee, his last assignment was the Federal Government Relations Manager in Washington, D.C. Willie serves as Chairman of the Board for Alaska Manufacturing Extension Partnership and on the Charter College Board of Trustees.

Willie was a founder of NANA Regional Corporation, served as a director for 20 years and concluded his career there as president. While at NANA, he directed its involvement in the oilfield services area, most specifically in the environmental services and drilling ventures. He was also active in the development of the world's largest lead and zinc mine, Red Dog. He also was a founder of Maniilaq, the regional non-profit representing the Tribes in the Kotzebue region and was involved in the formation of the Alaska Federation of Natives and served as executive director, president and co-chair. 

Willie graduated from George Washington University with a B.A. in Political Science and Economics. He was awarded an Honoree Doctorate of Laws, from the University of Alaska, Anchorage where he currently teaches.