Julia Fine Named Alutiiq Museum Volunteer of the Year–February 14, 2017
In honor of Valentines Day, the Alutiiq Museum likes to show some love for its volunteers. We are fortunate to have many people who contribute time and assistance to our work. Volunteers set up for events, greet visitors, identify historic photographs, organize collections, and work with archaeologists. To show our gratitude, we recognize one outstanding contribution with our annual Volunteer of the Year award. For 2016, we picked Julia Fine.
Fine has both a talent for languages and a keen interest in their construction. Originally from Massachusetts, she attended Stanford University, where she earned a Bachelor’s degree in linguistics. She first came to Kodiak in 2013 as an intern, helping to teach methods of language instruction. This gave her the chance to study Alutiiq and conduct research on styles of speech.
In 2016, Fine helped the museum with two major projects. She recorded Alutiiq speech for two electronic, Alutiiq language children’s books Yaaki (Yaaki the Dog) and Naken Taitaartat Alagnat? (Where do Berries Come From?), sponsored by the Native Village of Afognak. This involved careful editing of audio files to isolate words and letters so they can be heard individually by beginning Alutiiq language learners.
Fine also participated in an Alutiiq Language Summit, where she recorded Elders telling their life stories in Alutiiq. In just five days, she squeezed in eleven interviews! These recordings will be archived in the Alutiiq Museum’s collections and shared online in the Alutiiq Speakers Registry. For her hard work and dedication to the preservation of the Alutiiq language, we recognize Fine as our 2016 volunteer of the Year.
Photo: Julia Fine at the 2o16 Alutiiq Language Summit in Kodiak.