Covenant House Alaska Welcomes New Board Members

Kerry Reifel Events

Covenant House Alaska is thrilled to introduce several exceptional individuals who have joined our board of directors during this past year. With a shared commitment to addressing youth homelessness and providing support, these dynamic leaders bring a wealth of experience and a diverse range of backgrounds to further our mission, enriching our board with their unique perspectives and adding to our overall diversity.

LeeAnn Garrick, Chief Operating Officer for Cook Inlet Tribal Council Inc. (CITC), brings over 16 years of leadership experience in the Alaska Native Tribal Health System. Ms. Garrick’s extensive knowledge and expertise in supporting vulnerable populations, particularly Alaska Native youth experiencing homelessness, will be invaluable to our board. She is also a CIRI shareholder and member of the Ninilchik Natives Association and the Kenaitze Indian Tribe.

Jennifer Tungul, Vice President, Alaska Operations, Matson Navigation Company of Alaska, is responsible for terminal and equipment operations across multiple Alaskan locations. Ms. Tungul grew up in Unalaska/Dutch Harbor and raised her children there as well. Her experience offers a statewide perspective, and her community involvement and commitment to inclusivity make her a valuable addition to our board.

Marilyn Romano, Regional Vice-President for Alaska Airlines, plays a crucial role in shaping the company’s strategic external relations, sales and marketing, and communications in Alaska. Her leadership experience and dedication to helping young people gain skills for successful employment pathways align perfectly with our mission. Marilyn has served on or is serving on the Rasmuson Foundation board, the Governor’s Aviation Advisory Board, Northrim Bank Board, and the Alaska Airlines Foundation.

Vinit Rajani, Manager of Strategy & Portfolio Management and Commercial for ConocoPhillips Alaska, brings more than 16 years of oil and natural gas experience to the table. His expertise in strategy, portfolio management, and his philanthropic work highlight his dedication to supporting vulnerable populations. Vinit grew up in India and credits his successes to the people in his life supporting him and desires to emulate that.

Ryna Lealai, a Youth Champion Fellow, has lived experience with homelessness and has become a passionate advocate for young people facing similar challenges. Her commitment to empowering youth and creating a sense of community aligns perfectly with our organization’s mission.

Elizabeth Pavlas, the Chief Operations Officer at Global Credit Union, brings over 20 years of management experience to the board. With her strong leadership skills and strategic decision-making, she will contribute significantly to our efforts in serving Alaska’s youth.

Rev. Matt Schultz, pastor at First Presbyterian Church of Anchorage, is a valuable addition to our board. With his background in theology and community engagement, Rev. Schultz brings a unique perspective and a deep commitment to service. His involvement with Christians for Equality, the Homelessness Leadership Council, and other advocacy groups further demonstrates his dedication to making a positive impact.

“The addition of these exceptional board members reflects Covenant House Alaska’s dedication to diversity and inclusivity. Their combined expertise and passion for making a positive impact will further enhance our ability to provide unconditional love, absolute respect, and relentless support to young people facing homelessness and survivors of trafficking,” says Alison Kear, Chief Executive Officer at Covenant House Alaska.

Together, we will continue to build bridges of hope for Alaska’s youth, empowering them to overcome adversity and achieve a brighter future. Covenant House Alaska remains committed to our mission of making homelessness for vulnerable young people rare, brief, and non-recurring. With the support of our expanded board, we are poised to make an even greater difference in the lives of those we serve.