Law Student Finds Support, Connection with Sealaska
Wednesday, June 15, 2022

Jess Johnson, 2022 Sealaska Scholarship recipient.

“Knowing Sealaska is rooting for me is much more meaningful than just the money.” 

This spring, look for stories from some of Sealaska’s scholarship recipients. Each student is on a different path, with diverse personal, academic and professional goals. Sealaska believes in their dreams. By helping to further the education of these future leaders, we are investing in our people’s shared future.  

Jess Johnson is currently finishing up her second year of law school at Syracuse University. She plans to focus on intellectual property law upon graduating and passing the bar and is taking engineering classes in addition to her already-heavy law school load in hopes of boosting her knowledge across both areas. Johnson said she has found her pursuit of a law degree fulfilling beyond simply studying to become a lawyer.  

“Learning how to think, how to question – that sort of big concept stuff, learning how to analyze something, training your mind to think a certain way – I’ve really enjoyed that aspect of my education,” said Johnson.  

Johnson has also found meaning in the support she received from Sealaska, she said, feeling inspired by the confidence her corporation has in her. For her, the recognition means even more than the financial support.  

“It gives me an extra boost, that stamp of approval from my corporation,” she said. “Knowing my people think I’ll get through it, that I’ll be just fine – it’s meaningful. Knowing Sealaska is rooting for me is much more meaningful than just the money.” 

Johnson is a former Sealaska intern. During her internship, she observed legal research for a patent for one of Sealaska’s marine engineering businesses. The project inspired her to pursue patent law as a path toward making a difference for both people and planet, a goal which Sealaska shares. 

“If I could use any sort of engineering or environmental law and take what I’ve learned to have a positive impact on the world, I think that would be amazing,” Johnson said.  

About Sealaska’s Scholarship Program 

Sealaska is dedicated to advancing the opportunities of our people through access to higher education and vocational training. The Sealaska scholarship program serves shareholders and descendants enrolled full or part time in vocational-technical programs and accredited colleges and universities. To date, Sealaska has committed $26.5 million to its scholarship fund and awards 400-plus scholarships per year. For full program information and eligibility requirements, please visit 

Latest News

Sealaska Announces Spring Distribution of $19.2 Million

Posted 4/12/2024
As part of Sealaska’s continued investment in our communities and region, a spring 2024 distribution totaling $19.2 million will be issued to shareholders on Thursday, April 18. Sealaska’s board of directors approved the distribution at a meeting held in Juneau on Friday, April 12. The upcoming distribution includes dividends totaling $4.5 million from Sealaska’s ocean-health business platform, $3.1 million from the Marjorie V. Young (MVY) Shareholder Permanent Fund and an additional $11.6 milli...

Sealaska Spring 2024 Distribution Date Announced

Posted 3/19/2024
The Sealaska Board of Directors will meet on Friday, April 12, 2024, to approve the amount for Sealaska’s 2024 spring distribution. The distribution will take place on Thursday, April 18.  Shareholders can prepare for a seamless distribution by completing any enrollment or stock transfer paperwork, including gifting or inheritance, by Friday, April 12 at 4 p.m. The last day to make changes to addresses or direct deposit information is Monday, April 15, , before close of business, or online via M...

Sealaska announces Desiree Jackson to serve as Vice President of Administration and Outreach

Posted 3/6/2024
Jackson’s goals, experience are aligned with Sealaska’s vision for shareholders, communities and the region’s collective future. A focus on strategy, values and excellence has led Desiree Anax x’aséigu yé Jackson to her new role as Sealaska’s Vice President of Administration and Outreach. Jackson has served as the executive director of...

First Quarter Board Q&A provides shareholders an opportunity to connect with their board

Posted 3/4/2024
Members of Sealaska’s board of directors had an opportunity to connect with shareholders and answer questions during the Feb. 29 board Q&A session hosted on MySealaska. Directors Barbara Cadiente Nelson, Ka’illjuus Lisa Lang joined Executive Chair Joe Nelson and Board Youth Advisor Deikeenaak’w  Connor Ulmer in providing an update following January’s board meeting and shared upcoming opportunities and associated deadlines with participants. Sealaska’s language grant application period i...

Virtual Shareholder Orientation offers connection, information for original and new shareholders alike

Posted 2/26/2024
Sealaska’s Shareholder Relations team hosted a virtual shareholder orientation on Tuesday, Feb. 20 for an audience of nearly 170 shareholders from far and wide. This event offered both new and long-term shareholders a chance to learn more about the benefits and responsibilities of being a shareholder and answer questions about specific Shareholder Relations policies, procedures and protocol.   Shareholder Relations Manager Jodie Gatti, who joined the Sealaska team in November, was joined by...