In 1971, Congress significantly departed from its established federal Indian policy by enacting the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA), which established 12 regional Native corporations (a 13th was later formed) and more than 200 village corporations.
Congress authorized the conveyance of fee title to 40 million acres of public lands in Alaska and the payment of $962.5 million to Native-owned corporations created under the act. ANCSA was designed to give Alaska Natives a means of ensuring financial independence by giving them corporate ownership to large tracts of land and the opportunity to develop that land.
In the more than four decades since ANCSA’s passage, Alaska Native corporations have successfully integrated into the national and international business communities, and many, including Chugach Alaska Corporation, are among the leading businesses in the state.
The corporations created by ANCSA do much more than make money, however. We make a difference in the lives of their Alaska Native shareholders. Over the last four years, Alaska Native corporations have invested an average of 62.4 percent of our net income in dividends, social and cultural programs, and scholarships that benefit shareholders and their descendants. According to data collected by ANCSA Regional Association, between 2009 and 2012, the 12 regional corporations paid out a total of $678.4 million in shareholder dividends. Collectively, we manage tens of millions of land holdings, ensuring a thoughtful and responsible balance of development and preservation. In addition to the economic advantages Alaska Native corporations provide to shareholders, we strive to advance opportunities for Alaska Native people in the business world through shareholder hire and career development.