Music Matters
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Mike Sfraga, nominated as the nation's first U.S. Arctic Ambassador

Michael Sfraga, in his role as chair of US Arctic Research Commission.jpg
Mike Sfraga testifies before the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee on the U.S. Coast Guard’s Leadership on Arctic Safety, Security, and Environmental Responsibility, December 7, 2022. Photo courtesy of the Wilson Center

President Joe Biden has named an Alaskan as the nation’s first U.S. Arctic Ambassador -- Michael Sfraga, who currently chairs the U.S. Arctic Research Commission, a Biden appointment in 2021.

Sfraga, considered an expert on Arctic geography and policy, has been a longtime advocate of using Indigenous knowledge to better understand the science of the Arctic.

He has served in a number of national leadership roles that involve the Arctic and helped to found the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C.

Sfraga was also a Vice Chancellor at the University of Alaska Fairbanks and a faculty member.

He earned the first Ph.D. in Geography and Northern Studies at UAF.

Rhonda McBride has a long history of working in both television and radio in Alaska, going back to 1988, when she was news director at KYUK, the public radio and TV stations in Bethel, which broadcast in both the English and Yup’ik languages.