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Lisa Phu, KTOO - Juneau

Lisa Phu is a reporter at KTOO in Juneau.

James Hoagland learned the art of wig making while performing as a drag queen for eight years. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

From Frozen To Cover Girl, Drag Queen Style Hinges On Hair

James Hoagland is in the business of wigs. Not just your ordinary costume and fashion wigs – his are specifically for drag queens. He spends hours styling hair and stitching it into wig caps. Last year, he sold 300 mostly to clients in the Lower 48 and internationally.

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February 13, 2015
Writer David Holthouse shares his story of being raped as a child during a talk at the Alaska Capitol. Rep. Geran Tarr (D-Anchorage) first introduced Erin’s Law last year. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

Child sex abuse survivor wants to shatter the silence with Erin’s Law

Alaska raised writer David Holthouse has told his story of being sexually abused as a child before. It’s appeared in newspapers, on the radio and on stage in New York City.

But when he spoke in the Alaska Capitol building today, it was to support Erin’s Law, a bill that would require public schools statewide to provide age-appropriate K-12 sexual abuse education.

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February 12, 2015
Participants of the Tlingit Language Learners Group point to the ceiling during an exercise called Total Physical Response. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

Why Some Alaskans Are Learning The Tlingit Language

A group of people in Juneau spend an hour every Monday practicing Tlingit. They bring dictionaries and flashcards, look at handouts and do language exercises. But this isn’t a class.

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February 5, 2015
Delta Air Lines performs a test flight into Juneau. (Photo by Doug Wahto)

Delta To Add Year-Round Competition In Juneau, Fairbanks

Delta Air Lines will fly year-round between Juneau and Seattle starting in May. This is a change from just offering flights during the summer, and could signal more Delta service coming to the state in the future.

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January 27, 2015
Kathleen Adair says she feels relieved with the court’s decision to dismiss the case against her. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

Case Dismissed Against Hiker Who Freed Trapped Eagle

The State of Alaska dropped its case against a Juneau woman who was cited for springing legal traps and freeing a bald eagle. At Kathleen Adair’s arraignment Thursday, the district attorney asked the judge to dismiss the case and encouraged Adair to continue freeing eagles.

January 23, 2015
Kathleen Adair encountered an eagle stuck in two traps Dec. 24. (Photo courtesy Kathleen Adair)

Juneau Hiker Who Freed Trapped Eagle Due In Court

A bald eagle was lying on the ground, each leg shut inside traps. When Juneau resident Kathleen Adair came across it scouting a trail for a group hike, the eagle was alive and looking at her. She spent an hour freeing it.

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January 22, 2015
It was Gilbert’s idea to start securing herself to the chairlift as a way to be more independent. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

People With Disabilities Find Independence Through Skiing

For 18 years, ORCA has been teaching people with disabilities how to ski at Juneau’s Eaglecrest Ski Area. Its Adaptive Ski and Snowboard program is helping people discover their own potential.

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January 20, 2015
The UAS Bookstore sold a lot more than just books. (Photo courtesy MRV Architects)

UAS Closes Bookstore, Prepares For Tight Budget Times

The University of Alaska Southeast closed its bookstore in Juneau at the end of last year, because it hadn’t been profitable for years. As the school looks ahead, UAS will need to make more tough decisions about its budget.

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January 15, 2015

Juneau Resident In Paris During Attack On Charlie Hebdo Magazine

Juneau resident Henry DeCherney arrived in Paris on Monday as part of an extended holiday traveling in Europe. He was there for Wednesday’s attack on Charlie Hebdo magazine that left 12 dead and today’s dual hostage situation, which killed four. The two main suspects in Wednesday’s attack and an associate were killed as well.

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January 9, 2015
SEAGLA members get together to march in Juneau’s 2014 July 4th parade. (Photo courtesy James Hoagland)

An LGBTQ Renaissance In Juneau

Juneau’s alliance group for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people has been going through a renaissance with new board members and energy. Now, with recent grant funding, SEAGLA hopes to increase visibility and awareness in the capital city and beyond.

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January 8, 2015
Kelly Pajinag grew up in Juneau and graduated from Juneau-Douglas High School in 2000. He joined Hospice & Home Care of Juneau in the summer of 2013. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

Pajinag Takes The Reins Of Front Street Community Health Center

Kelly Pajinag is the new interim executive director of Front Street Community Health Center as of Jan. 1. He’s also the program manager of Catholic Community Services’ Hospice & Home Care of Juneau. As he juggles two jobs, Pajinag hopes to help the homeless clinic get through some growing pains.

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January 7, 2015
The book was published by the University of Alaska Press in November and is widely available. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

How the Alaska Native Brotherhood Changed Alaska History

In “A Dangerous Idea,” author Peter Metcalfe explores the crucial role the Alaska Native Brotherhood played in securing Native rights and land claims before, during and after statehood. The recently published book explores an often overlooked chapter in Alaska’s story. Metcalfe suggests, without the ANB, the Alaska of today would be a very different place.

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December 19, 2014
Native art expert and teacher Steve Brown created the formline on the glass awnings encircling the Walter Soboleff Center. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

Sealaska Heritage Institute Begins Move into Walter Soboleff Center

Sealaska Heritage Institute started moving into its new home in the yet-to-be-opened Walter Soboleff Center this week.

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December 18, 2014
Montessori Borealis teacher Cory Crossett explains how the bead chain cabinet shows mathematical concepts in physical form rather than on a piece of paper. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

Juneau School Board to Decide if Montessori Borealis Should be its Own School

Montessori Borealis has been part of the Juneau School District for 20 years as an optional program. After a couple years of planning, the Montessori Borealis community submitted a proposal last spring to become its own school.

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December 16, 2014
SAGA AmeriCorps volunteer Maia Wolf (second from right) poses with other AmeriCorps members last year. (Photo courtesy Maia Wolf)

SAGA to Cease AmeriCorps Program, Hopes Another Org Will Save It

Nineteen AmeriCorps volunteers throughout the state were told this week their positions, including stipends and benefits, could end on Monday.

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December 12, 2014
St. Vincent de Paul general manager Dan Austin looks out onto the land where the new senior housing facility will be built. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

St. Vincent de Paul to build 41 affordable housing units for seniors

Juneau nonprofit St. Vincent de Paul and partner agency Seattle-based GMD Development have been awarded $9 million in tax credit financing from the Alaska Housing Finance Corporation. The award will allow the agencies to build 41 units of affordable housing in the capital city for low income seniors.

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December 9, 2014
Juneau Schools Superintendent Mark Miller reads his decision in the company of three guests – Marcelo Quinto, Charlotte McConnell and Katherine Hope – who attended Native boarding schools as children. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

Juneau Schools To Replace Controversial Texts With Local History

Juneau Schools Superintendent Mark Miller says the district will remove four controversial readers from the elementary school language arts curriculum. He announced his decision at a press conference Thursday at the Zach Gordon Youth Center.

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December 5, 2014

University of Alaska Delays Survey on Sexual Assault on Campus

The University of Alaska system has delayed a campus climate survey originally scheduled for October. The goal of the survey is to gauge the prevalence of sexual assault on campus and students’ attitudes on the issue.

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December 3, 2014
The Juneau School District made copies of the controversial texts available for public review. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

Decision due soon on ‘distorted’ school texts depicting Native tragedies

The Juneau School District will decide next week if four controversial texts will remain part of the elementary school curriculum.

Members and organizations of Juneau’s Alaska Native community raised concerns about texts depicting Alaska Native and Native American experiences, like boarding schools and the Trail of Tears. A cultural specialist calls the texts “inaccurate” and “distorted,” and a school district committee voted to remove the books from the classroom.

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November 26, 2014
Brew helped locate a missing hunter in September. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

When missing person isn’t found, Juneau SEADOGS search for happy ending

At least once a week, 10 handlers and their dogs muck through the mountains, muskegs and forests on and off the beaten paths of Juneau in search of volunteer hiders. It’s practice for SEADOGS, or SE Alaska Dogs Organized for Ground Search. Local authorities call on the volunteer group several times a year to help out when people go missing.

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November 25, 2014