Wesley Early, Alaska Public Media - Anchorage

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Wesley is a reporter for Alaska Public Media, covering primarily city government and Anchorage life. He previously worked at Alaska Public Media as a web editor, producer and education reporter before a two-year stint in Kotzebue, AK as News Director for KOTZ-AM.
Smoke seen rising from tundra

Thousands of lightning strikes spark more than a dozen wildfires in Northwest Alaska

A spokesperson for the state Division of Forestry said there are several communities in close proximity to new fires.
A zoom box with five people

Kotzebue man pleads guilty to 2018 murder, sexual abuse of 10-year-old Ashley Johnson-Barr

A Kotzebue man has pleaded guilty to the 2018 murder and sexual abuse of 10-year-old Ashley Johnson-Barr. Peter Wilson faces a prison sentence of up to 99 years.
A man standing on ice holds up a long slab of baleen

With a haul of 11 whales this season, Point Hope gears up for Qaġruq festival

This weekend kicked off the Qaġruq Whaling Festival in Point Hope. Every year, people come from around the region for a three-day feast to celebrate the annual subsistence haul of the whaling season.
A woman with short hair and several jackets

As COVID-19 restrictions lift, Northwest Arctic Borough renews push for VPSOs in every village

As COVID-19 restrictions are lifting in the Northwest Arctic Borough, local public safety officials are continuing their push to get Village Public Safety Officers in more communities.
A radio sattelite

GCI to upgrade wireless speeds across Alaska

Once the upgrade is complete, Nome and Kotzebue residents can expect prices to lower and be closer to what people in Anchorage pay for their 1-gig service, according to a GCI spokesperson.
A village with just houses visible above the water

Northwest Alaska village of Buckland assessing flood damage as water levels drop

There have been no injuries from the flood reported so far. Responders are beginning to assess the damage to homes.
A village with just houses visible above the water

Northwest Alaska village of Buckland floods due to ice jam

Residents of Buckland say they have boats ready to evacuate should the water level continue to rise because of an ice jam downriver from the village.

Arctic research conference to highlight how rural Alaska communities approach energy, climate issues

Several Alaska energy researchers will be featured during a national U.S. Arctic Research Commission conference this week. One of the big topics under discussion will be how rural Arctic communities deal with energy and climate...

Alaska development authority signs land access agreement with Native corporation for Ambler Road project

State development corporation AIDEA signed an agreement with Doyon, the state's largest landowner, to conduct surveys and studies on its land for the Ambler Road project.
portrait of woman with traditional Alaska Native chin tattooing

For newly minted Iñupiaq doctoral graduate, opening doors for more Native scholars remains vital

The process of earning a doctorate takes a lot of time and work. And for one Iñupiaq woman, hearing the words doctor next to her name was emotional: Her response to passing her dissertation defense went viral this month after hundreds of thousands of people watched her reaction.
A man with a frosty hat and jacket.

‘A pretty tough race’: Musher Tony Browning is first to cross Kobuk 440 finish line

Long-time musher Tony Browning and his dog team dashed across the finish line around 7:20 a.m. Tuesday. The actual race winner won’t be announced until officials adjust times to account for distances traveled during a harrowing storm.
Dog teams in a snowy field

Mushers brave wind, snow and fog at start of Kobuk 440

It was six degrees below zero, but the heavy winds make it feel more like 34 degrees below and a white fog blanketed the teams at the last major mushing event of the season in Alaska.
Sled teams on a wide snowy area

Winter weather delays Kobuk 440 start by a day

The last major race of the Alaska dog mushing season was originally supposed to start Thursday, but race officials say winter storms near Kotzebue hampered necessary travel of the mushers and other shipments.
A white boxy building

With positions unfilled, Western Alaska prosecutors struggle to prioritize massive caseloads

The District Attorney position in Kotzebue is currently unfilled, meaning the DA in Nome is filling in, despite already trying to investigate and prosecute about 1,000 new cases a year.
A basketball team in red wearing masks

Kiana’s boys basketball team needed 1 more player. An 8th-grade girl volunteered.

In Alaska, a high school team can’t play in a tournament without a minimum of five players.

Dozens of homes, water treatment plant are without power in Selawik

As of Tuesday morning, 150 homes, an apartment complex and the water treatment plant were without power.
A jar with a translucent liquid

Northwest Alaska health provider cleared to serve seal oil to elders

In 2015, Congress passed the federal farm bill which allowed people to donate wild game that they’ve hunted to certified non-profits, like hospitals or food banks.
A small heard of musk ox in field with low mountains around

Former Kotzebue mayor to lead National Park Service’s Native relations program for Alaska

Maija Katak Lukin, a former mayor of Kotzebue, has been selected as the Native relations program manager for the National Park Service’s Alaska region.
A terraced pit mine with a dust explosion in the middle

Red Dog Mine employee dies in production drill incident, mine operators say

An employee at the Red Dog Mine died during an incident at a production drill, mine operators say.
A woman in a pink shirt speaks at t

Alaska Federation of Natives leadership calls for Trump’s resignation after violence at Capitol

Alaska Federation of Natives president Julie Kitka said that she was horrified by Jan. 6’s deadly attack on the U.S. Capitol by Trump supporters.