Northrim Bank gives $35,000 to University of Alaska Southeast

John Pugh and Joe Beedle

Northrim Bank President and CEO Joe Beedle (right) presents a $35,000 check to University of Alaska Southeast Chancellor John Pugh. The gift will help pay for online courses through the UAS School of Management. (Photo by Casey Kelly/KTOO)

Northrim Bank is giving nearly $240,000 to the University of Alaska to support business programs and economic research.

The donation includes $35,000 for the School of Management at the University of Alaska Southeast. The UAS campus in Juneau will get $25,000, while the Sitka and Ketchikan campuses each get $5,000.

Chancellor John Pugh says the money will help UAS offer online courses to students in rural communities.

“Many people out there don’t know that we distance deliver all of our business programs,” Pugh said. “So it’s a real accessibility mission for us to get out to smaller communities, and this is going to help support that mission.”

Northrim Bank President and CEO Joe Beedle presented Pugh an oversized check at a luncheon in Juneau on Friday. Beedle acknowledged that the bank gets tax credits for donating to the university. But he says the financial institution also hopes to benefit by having a more highly trained workforce.

“I’m a product of the university myself, and I attribute a lot of my success to the training I got at the university and the introduction I had from the university into banking,” said Beedle, who grew up in Juneau and graduated from Juneau-Douglas High School.

“You’ll see the best economies in the country partnering with universities,” he said.

Northrim also donated $100,000 to the Institute of Social and Economic Research at the University of Alaska Anchorage, and $50,000 each to UAA’s Small Business Development Center and the University of Alaska Fairbanks School of Management. The University of Alaska Foundation gets $4,500 for scholarships for accounting students.

On April 1, Anchorage-based Northrim completed the purchase of Alaska Pacific Bank of Juneau in a stock and cash transaction valued at about $14 million.