Denali Daniels was born, raised, and educated in Alaska. She grew up in Kasilof in a log cabin on a 17-acre homestead built by her father. She holds a BA in Psychology and Masters in Public Administration, both from the University of Alaska, Anchorage, and has spent over twenty years serving in public, private and non-profit sectors. Her work has influenced policy in Alaska on major initiatives such as renewable energy, health, utilities, professional licensing, criminal justice reform, senior services, education and early childhood development – all with the impact to Alaska’s 229 tribes in mind.
Denali’s professional career began in 1996 when she served as a legislative aide in Juneau. After a series of other policy related positions, she served ten years at the Denali Commission. Over the years Denali has traveled to hundreds of Alaska villages and communities, leading numerous strategic, often high profile initiatives across the state.
Founded in 2012, and a partner at the Alaska Community Foundation’s (ACF’s) Philanthropy Hub, Denali Daniels & Associates (DDA), Inc. provides strategic planning, public involvement and policy research support to clients.
Jodi is a second generation Alaskan, born and raised in Anchorage. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration and Management from Alaska Pacific University. Jodi’s career has been split between the private and public sectors. For several years, she was responsible for external marketing for an Alaskan mechanical and electrical engineering firm. While there, she served on the Architecture/Engineering Marketing Association of Alaska board of directors for four years, and held multiple leadership positions during that time.More recently, her experience focused on rural Alaska energy, managing rural infrastructure programs for the Denali Commission. In addition to program and project management, her responsibilities included facilitating meetings between local communities and federal and state agencies, leading energy-focused meetings with leaders in the field and Denali Commissioners, strategic planning for annual investments, and preparing written work plans.
As a Senior Project Manager at DDA, Jodi manages the National Strategy for the Arctic Region Ten Year Renewable Energy Plan implementation.
Chelsea Ward-Waller joined the DDA team in November 2013. Chelsea holds a Bachelor’s of Arts degree from Middlebury College, with a major in geology and a minor in environmental studies. In the spring of 2012, Chelsea co-organized a 3-month bike tour across 5,000 miles of the southern US to promote bicycle safety, managing social media and events for the non-profit Ride America for Safe Routes. In August 2013, she hiked and packrafted 300 miles of the North Slope as a member of Expedition Arguk, to generate more awareness about changes in Alaska’s arctic.
With strong organization and communications skills, Chelsea was promoted from project assistant to project manager within a year of being on board at DDA. Chelsea has learned to efficiently and effectively manage projects with multiple partners by moving pieces forward with appropriate and direct communication. The first project that Chelsea managed was with the Alaska Food Policy Council, a statewide coalition of partners, and she has since managed projects for Alaska Commission on Aging, Anchorage Water and Wastewater Utility, and Bike Anchorage. Both the Alaska Food Policy Council and Alaska Commission on Aging projects were through the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services.