New director for Catholic Community Service

A major Southeast social-service agency has a new top official.

Jean Strafford will take over as executive director of Catholic Community Service on May 1st.

The Juneau-based nonprofit provides assistance to senior citizens and families, offering transportation, meals and child-care services to Southeast residents. It also runs the capital city’s hospice program.

Strafford has been Catholic Community Service’s finance director since last summer. She also held that post from 2001 to 2005. In addition, she worked for the Sealaska Corporation, the Juneau Economic Development Council, and Juneau’s municipal government.

Board Vice President John Greely says that experience made her the strongest finalist.

“She’s been our financial wizard there for quite a few years and knows the ins and outs of the agency and has the confidence of the employees. So she seemed to be the logical choice,” he says.

Strafford takes over from Rosemary Hagevig, who is retiring after 14 years on the job.

No significant changes are expected. Greeley says funding is a major challenge.

“We’re sort of waiting for the shoe to drop in Washington D.C. with some of the agencies that are our major grantees. We’re hoping that for the next year or so the funding will be stable enough that we don’t have to restructure a lot of our programs,” he says.

Catholic Community Service has 200 employees and 250 volunteers. It was founded in 1974.

Recent headlines

  • Computer problems for some - extended coffee break for others: Some employees of the Dept. of Commerce, Community and Economic Development, Financial Services Division in the State Office Building in Juneau drink coffee near their disabled computers March 22, 2017. The workers, who chose to not be identified, said that some computers were working while others were not as a result of a statewide technical problem within the state's system. (Photo by Skip Gray/360 North)

    Software update locks thousands of state workers out of computers

    Roughly 6,000 state workers were unable to log in to their computers, affecting two in five executive branch workers.
  • The top of the Raven Shark totem pole lies in Totem Hall at Sitka National Historical Park. (Photo by Emily Russell/KCAW)

    After 30 years, Raven Shark pole back in Sitka

    The totem pole is an icon of the Pacific Northwest. The carved art form showcases clan stories and family crests in museums around the world. After more than 30 years in the Anchorage Museum, a century-old pole from Southeast has made it back to Sitka, where curators are prepping a permanent home.
  • Longtime leader Rosita Worl to leave Sealaska board

    One of the Sealaska regional Native corporation’s longest-serving leaders is stepping down. Rosita Worl says she will not run for another term after 30 years on the board.
  • U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, speaks to reporters in one of the Senate’s more ornate rooms. (Photo by Liz Ruskin/Alaska Public Media)

    Murkowski at odds with Trump’s call to end NEA funding

    President Donald Trump’s budget outline calls for eliminating funding for the National Endowment for the Arts. The NEA has been a frequent target of Republicans, but U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski supports the endowment, and Tuesday she won the 2017 Congressional Arts Leadership Award.