2018 Board of Directors
The 2018 Board of Directors includes the following members of the downtown community:
Claiborne Porter, Jr. is a Licensed Architect with a Bachelor’s of Architecture and a Master’s
of Architecture & Urban Planning. He is the President of NCP Design/Build Ltd. and the
Principal of NCP Architects and Planners in Anchorage, Alaska. With more than 40 years of
experience in architectural design and construction in Alaska, Mr. Porter has designed
and constructed over 1200 single-family residences, 800 multi-family residences, and 3200
remodeling projects at both urban and rural sites across the state. Mr. Porter has served on the Anchorage Downtown Partnership, Ltd. Board of Directors since 2010.
Steve Zelener has owned and developed commercial propertys in Anchorage since 1987. In 2010 he became the owner of the Solar Building Downtown at 441 W. 5 th Ave., and in 2011, this property became one of the first and the largest commercial buildings in Alaska to use 96 solar panels. In 2013 Mr. Zelener invested in the downtown wood fire pizza restaurant, Fat Ptarmigan. Currently Mr. Zelener is the Lake Hood Hangers project developer at TSAIA with 18 airplane hangers under construction at Lake Hood. Mr. Zelener was appointed to Anchorage Downtown Partnership, Ltd. Board by the President in 2016.
Dubbed the “Bipolar CEO” by Inc. Magazine, Duncan Harrison has real estate in Alaska and a business in Hawaii — and divides his existence in half, between the two. Duncan owns and operates Aloha Automotive in Hawaii. Duncan owns properties at 7th & E Street as well as 7th & D Street in downtown Anchorage.
BIO COMING SOON!
BIO COMING SOON!
Sandy Harper has been a downtown property owner, resident, and creative entrepreneur for well over thirty years. She was the co-founder of Cyrano’s Off Center Playhouse, Bookstore, Cafe, and “cultural mini-mall”, which included a cinema, art shows, music, and special events. Harper is the Producing Artistic Director Emeritus for Eccentric Theatre Company/Cyrano’s Theatre Company. Cyrano’s Theatre Company consistently won “Best Live Theatre” in Anchorage. Cyrano’s Off Center Playhouse was a recipient of the Anchorage Downtown Partnership’s “Heart of the City” award and a series of special citations from the Alaska Legislature. Harper also served on the national board of the Last Frontier Theatre Conference, the Rasmuson Foundation, and was past president of the Anchorage Cultural Council. Civic recognitions include: the Governor’s Award for Distinguished Service to the Humanities, the Soroptimist Society award for encouraging women in the arts, and the Lorene Harrison Lifetime Achievement award. Harper is a member of the ATHENA Society and was inducted into the Alaska Woman’s Hall of Fame last year. Harper has a special interest in the history of Anchorage and Alaska. She was co-chair of the “Friends of the 4th Avenue Theatre” committee and curated an art show with special events, including Fran Ulmer moderating a panel on the issues of climate change, called “Cross Roads: There Is No Planet B” last
Stephen Welch is the Mall Manager at Anchorage Fifth Avenue Mall in Anchorage, Alaska, for Simon Property Group, Inc. (NYSE:SPG) Stephen is accountable for long-term and temporary leasing, negotiation of contracts, staff supervision, office management, budgeting and monthly financial analysis, security and daily operations. Additionally, he is accountable for the development and implementation of mall marketing programs, sales analysis, corporate and tenant communication and community relations.
Prior to Anchorage, Welch served as the Mall Manager at Gulf View Square in Port Richey, Florida. Prior to that, he began his career with Simon in 2009 at Greenwood Park Mall before moving on to Lake Square Mall, Lenox Square, and Anderson Mall. During his time at these different malls, he was successfully involved with leasing efforts, capital projects and participated in multiple signature events held at the properties. In these positions, he was also able to experience all facets of property management in large volume, high traffic shopping centers.
Throughout his career Welch has been strongly dedicated to serving our country. He served as an infantryman for six years, while also pursuing an education at the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University Purdue University of Indianapolis. He served in the Army National Guard as a cadet and team leader in an infantry unit, where he earned an airborne paratrooper badge. He looks forward to serving the Anchorage community.
David McCarthy is the CEO of Denali Visions 3000 (DV3Corp), parent company of the 49th State Brewing Co and a multitude of restaurants, venues, and hotels in Alaska. His deep understanding of brewery, restaurant, and hospitality operations is leading DV3Corp towards its vision of sharing Alaskan hospitality worldwide.
When he co-founded DV3Corp in 2006 with Jason Motyka he made Alaska his home. His commitment to Alaska’s tourism and hospitality growth was celebrated when he won the Small Business Person of the Year Award for Alaska in 2008 and 2017. He continues to reinvest in the Alaskan community by developing the sustainable foods market in Alaska and by serving on the Anchorage Downtown Partnership’s Board of Directors as the hospitality specialist.
McCarthy graduated with a culinary and restaurant management degree from Kendall College. He began his career with culinary giants in the Chicago restaurant scene and now has twenty years of experience as a trained chef and restauranteur. Additionally, he graduated from a dual campus brewing program at the Sibel Institute in Chicago and the Doemen’s Academy in Munich, Germany.
Michelle Gallagher joined RIM in 2008 after graduating from the University of Oregon School of Architecture and Allied Arts. As a licensed architect and Associate at RIM, Michelle brings expertise in client interface, arctic design, and commercial construction. Growing up throughout the US and Europe, she is happy to call Anchorage home. Integrating herself into the Anchorage community, Michelle serves on the Board of Directors for the Society of American Military Engineers (SAME) Anchorage Post and the Executive Board for the Downtown Community Council. She also participates in the Young Professionals group for the Anchorage Chamber, sits on the yearly scholarship selection committee for SAME, and created a RIM sponsored scholarship for SAME. Michelle’s passion for architecture lead to a downtown architectural bike tour with the Anchorage Museum Summer of 2016. In continuing to provide service to the community, Michelle participates in serving lunch at Beans Café, Food Bank Alaska’s ‘Canstruction’ event, and efforts to support nonprofit groups that support women and children through her sorority’s Anchorage alumni chapter.
Holly Spoth-Torres is the owner and principal of Huddle Alaska, a downtown Landscape Architecture and Community Engagement firm. Prior to Huddle Alaska, Ms. Spoth-Torres worked in public agencies in Alaska for more than 15 years. Her career focus has been developing innovative public involvement and community engagement strategies to get more people involved in local initiatives. During her time at the Municipality of Anchorage, Ms. Spoth-Torres collaborated with multiple stakeholders to develop a public-private partnership
that has resulted in more than $30 million investment in parks and trails. She is a member of the American Society of Landscape Architects, the International Association of Public Participation, and is a member of Anchorage Downtown Rotary. In 2016 she was named a Top 40 Under 40 by the Alaska Journal of Commerce.
Katherine Jernstrom – President
Katherine Jernstrom is an active entrepreneur, investor, connector, mentor and advisor. She is the CEO and cofounder of The Boardroom, a coworking space and entrepreneur hub in Anchorage. The Boardroom opened in 2013 and currently has 13,500 square feet of shared office space for 175 companies, as well as event and meeting space. Through The Boardroom, Katherine also manages educational entrepreneurial programing, including pitch workshops and events, startup weekends, and tech education. Katherine is also a Managing Partner at Alyeska Venture Management (AVM), a firm focused on building, funding, and supporting local startups. Katherine’s role has included fundraising private capital, performing due diligence, structuring debt and equity deals, and serving on corporate boards. In late 2015, Katherine cofounded Launch Alaska, the state’s first compressed, mentor focused accelerator program providing a combination of program support, team mentorship and seed funding. Katherine holds a BA from the University of Washington, a MPA from the University of Alaska Anchorage and is a graduate of Leadership Anchorage, a Pew Charitable Trusts
program. She serves on the board of directors for Launch Alaska, Anchorage Downtown Partnership, Spirit of Youth, AEDC’s Live. Work. Play. Steering Committee, and is an active Rotarian. At age 30, Katherine was named Top 40 Under 40 by the Alaska Journal of Commerce.
BIO COMING SOON!
Darryl Wong has been coming to Alaska several times a year since 1963, and calls Anchorage his second home, although residing permanently in Hawaii. He actively manages and operates three commercial buildings, amounting to over 150,000 square feet of commercial space in Anchorage. Mr. Wong’s biggest concern is the need for an Alaska Tourism Authority, similar to the Hawaii Tourism Authority, to advocate for the city and state’s interests pertaining to the strong tourism industry.
Seth Andersen is a licensed professional civil engineer with experience in structural engineering, site design, geotechnical engineering, real estate development and real estate management. He owns Arete, LLC, located downtown, an engineering, project management and development firm providing consulting and technical services for all states of residential, commercial and industrial development. Mr. Andersen is a member of the Anchorage Economic Development Corporation’s Live. Work. Play. initiative, and serves on the Anchorage South Community Council Executive Board.
Shanna Zuspan is a Principal and co-owner of Agnew::Beck Consulting with a background in financial and economic analysis, as well as community planning. Ms. Zuspan is passionate about helping communities find solutions to critical issues facing Alaska’s future. She has worked with local governments, tribal entities, state agencies, and in the private sector, providing objective facts and analytical tools to help organizations find common solutions to critical issues. Ms, Zuspan holds a Master’s in City Planning, Housing Community and
Economic Development from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and is part of the American Institute of Certified Planners.
Ryan Mae Lucas
Ryan Mae Lucas owns the first boutique style commercial real estate brokerage in Anchorage with a niche focus in business relocation. She has a particular interest in the redevelopment of downtown. Ms. Lucas served on the Advisory Board of the Heritage Land Bank for the Municipality of Anchorage and has extensive experience in real estate and baking. Ms. Lucas has 13 years of industry experience, small business ownership and cultural experiences from around the world. Ms. Lucas’ experience in management, finances, development, diverse multicultural perspective and real estate will contribute to the development goals of Anchorage Downtown Partnership, Ltd.
Joe Lumpkin was born and raised in Anchorage, attending East High School and University of Alaska Anchorage. Mr. Lumpkin is co-owner of MyThai Downtown Restaurant, and co-owner of a commercial real estate and business brokerage. With two businesses and a home located downtown, Mr. Lumpkin is a millennial that has a strong desire to see downtown develop into an environment that fosters success and safety for business owners, property owners and those visiting downtown.
Bill Fischer moved to Alaska following service as a Marine. He trained in culinary arts prior to joining the Marines, and his entrepreneurial spirit has led him to co-own two successful businesses in Alaska. Main Event Catering and Event Planning is a member of Anchorage Downtown Partnership, Ltd. Mr. Fischer is on the Board of Directors for the Alaska Food Truck Association, serving as Vice President. He is also attending Wayland Baptist University to earn his business degree. Mr. Fischer is the Assistant Coach of Dimond U14 Football team at the Boys & Girls Club, and enjoys teaching young men and women life skills, like discipline and leadership, that will have a positive influence on and off the field.
Kristin Rickard is an active member of the downtown community, and has owned and managed several businesses at the same time: Kristine’s Flowers and Catering, Bouncy Land of Alaska, and Boom Ba Laddy’s food truck. Ms. Rickard is the current President of the Alaska Food Truck and Mobile Vendors Association, and wants to focus on maintaining open lines of communication between local food trucks and existing brick and mortar establishments. In the past, she has served as President of the Service High School Booster Club, helping raise money for 50 Varsity players to attend a trip to Las Vegas and Hawaii. Ms. Rickard has
experience in fund raising, event planning and business management.
Gretchen Fauske leads entrepreneurial ecosystem building initiatives as Associate Director for the University of Alaska Center for Economic Development. She has partnered on research projects examining social and economic drivers in Alaska, helping to establish the Center for Economic Development as a key leader in Alaskan economic policy development. Ms. Fauske has expertise in marketing, critical thinking, economic development policy, and strategic planning.
Jim Kubitz has years of experience as a professional executive in the private sector, and is currently Vice President of Corporate Planning and Real Estate at the Alaska Railroad Corporation. He has worked in real estate, property management and commercial construction. Mr. Kubitz’s skills include project scoping and management, budget preparation and implementation, procurement, supervision and team building, public speaking and written communication and mission implementation. He served on the Anchorage Municipal Assembly from 1986 to 1992, including serving two years as Chair. Mr. Kubitz also has served on the Board of Directors for Alaska Center for the Performing Arts, Anchorage Housing Advisory Commission, Anchorage Economic Development Corporation, and Anchorage Winter Cities International Symposium. He has served on Anchorage Downtown Partnership’s Board since 2010 and is currently Vice President.
Steve Ribuffo – Marketing Chair
Steve Ribuffo is the Port Director at Municipality of Anchorage, overseeing logistics and supply chain operations. Steve is a 30-year veteran and retiree of the United States Air Force. He is a graduate of the U.S. Air Force Institute of Technology, Golden Gate University and Manhattan College.
Pierce Schwalb founded, and currently runs, two online businesses, and is the Director of Bike Anchorage. He has a Bachelor’s in Sustainability and Business Administration from University of Florida, and experience as an entrepreneur. Mr. Schwalb has experience working with state grants, advocacy, community education, non-profit management, and environmental stewardship. He has worked or volunteered with a variety of state and nonprofit players, including the Humboldt Bay Wildlife Refuge, The Nature Conservancy, The Sierra Club, Redwood Coast Energy Authority, and the National Park Service.
BIO COMING SOON!
BIO COMING SOON!
Silvia is the Executive Director of Alaska Hospitality Retailers representing over 230 members. She also serves as the Administrator for the Anchorage Responsible Retailers Association, whose mission is solutions for a cleaner, safer city, basic amenities & safety for visitors who choose camping while enjoying the great land experience, with compassionate outreach for the homeless. And Silvia is the Executive Director of the Anchorage Hospitality Foundation, a new community partner that works with other non profit organizations in the planning of a comprehensive system of substance abuse services.
Invited Elected Officials
Mayor Ethan Berkowitz
Assemblyman Chris Constant