The Rural Alaska Community Action Program, Inc. (RurAL CAP) announced that Harold Houston Sr. of Juneau, originally from Hoonah, was recently elected President of the Board of Directors. Houston, an Alaska Native leader representing the Tlingit Haida Central Council Indians of Alaska, will serve his first term as RurAL CAP’s board president, bringing his extensive experience to a demanding leadership role. Houston has served three years as a member of the RurAL CAP board, including a term as Secretary/Treasurer.
As the President and Tribal Administrator of the Juneau Tlingit Haida Community Council and fifth Vice-President of Central Council Tlingit Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska, Houston has represented the Alaska Native community and his region on many issues pertaining to subsistence, early child development and Head Start, the Violence Against Women Act, affordable housing and affordable energy.
Houston is the son of the late Leo Houston (Alyce Houston) and Gladys (McKinley) Skeek and of past stepfathers Elmer Koenig and Wilbur Skeek, and a graduate of Hoonah High School. He is a certified home inspector and holds a current six-pack guiding license. He is married to Valerie Gamble-Houston, originally from Angoon. The couple have been married for 23 years and have six children ranging in age from 4 to 28 and four grandchildren. They were licensed Alaska Native Foster Parents for the State of Alaska and fostered 30 children and adopted three. Both are members of the Alaska Native Brotherhood and Alaska Native Sisterhood respectively and are advocates for foster parenting and Autism Awareness. He is a board director for the Huna Totem Corporation and Juneau Lion’s Club member. Houston lives a subsistence lifestyle and enjoys teaching others how to process and prepare smoked salmon and halibut, seal, deer and shell fish.
“I look forward to working to enhance RurAL CAP’s mission to empower low-income Alaskans through advocacy, education, affordable housing and direct services that respect our unique values and cultures,” Houston said in a press release from RurAL CAP.
In addition to the election of Houston as Board President, Steve Longley of Nome was re-elected Vice-President and Jacqueline Dailey of Juneau was elected Secretary/Treasurer. The RurAL CAP Board of Directors holds its annual meeting each December at its central office in Anchorage where officers are elected to a one-year term. A complete list of board members is available at www.ruralcap.com.
RurAL CAP, founded in 1965, is a private, statewide, nonprofit organization working to improve the quality of life for low-income Alaskans. Governed by a 24-member Board of Directors representing every region of the state, RurAL CAP is one of the largest and most diversified nonprofit organizations in Alaska. During 2013, RurAL CAP employed 950 Alaskans in 79 communities statewide.