AFN's 6th Alaska Marketplace is 'All About You'

The Alaska Federation of Natives announced today that the application period for the popular Alaska Marketplace Competition (AKM) will open on May 18. This year’s competition invites participants to approach economic development from a new perspective: investing in themselves.


“This year’s theme is about the power of the individual,” said AFN President Julie Kitka. “Real sustainable development in rural Alaska happens one individual, one job, one great idea at a time.”

Adding a twist to this year’s competition, young Alaskans will be invited to share their ideas through written or video essays. All AKM submissions must address the “Investing in You” competition theme and one of the following sub-themes:

Sharing Knowledge: Innovative ideas to encourage life-long learning and collaboration.

Building Partnerships: New and inventive plans to develop partnerships with existing organizations to expand current, or create new, programs, services, and products.

Finding Opportunity: Practical use of untapped opportunities at or near home to create village enterprises.

Perpetuating Tradition: Fresh ideas to incorporate traditional activities into for-profit and nonprofit business ventures.

AFN launched the Alaska Marketplace Competition in 2005 to foster economic development in rural Alaska by soliciting creative ideas from entrepreneurs across the state in an ‘innovation competition.’ The Competition has distributed nearly $2 million in seed money through five successful competitions, spurring real economic growth in Alaska’s rural communities. Past winners range from archeological digs to village farms and producers of high-end botanical beauty products.

The Alaska Marketplace is an initiative of the Alaska Federation of Natives and is supported by a growing list of partners including the Denali Commission, BP, and ConocoPhillips Alaska. Learn more about the Alaska Marketplace at


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