I am of Inupiaq and Latina decent, born in Anchorage and raised in Nome, Alaska. I am the daughter of Maureen Pederson from Nome and the late Eduardo Machuca of Santiago, Chile. I am the granddaughter of the late Steve and Kitty Pederson of Council, Alaska.
I am currently the Vice President for Education, Employment and Supportive Services at Kawerak, Inc. since 2013 and was previously the Youth Employment Director from 2009-2013.
I received my A.A.S in Accounting in 1997 at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, B.A. in Psychology in 2003 and a M.S. in Clinical Psychology in 2005 from the University of Alaska Anchorage. During my time at UAA, I was the graduate coordinator for the Alaska Natives into Psychology program, and upon graduation, held positions at Southcentral Foundation.
Upon returning to my home community in 2009, I have been actively involved in the education, training, and employment of the Tribal members of the Bering Strait region. In my current position, I serve on many boards and committees, including advisor council member for the UAF-Northwest Campus, Northwestern Alaska Career and Technical Center, Alaska Native Coalition on Employment and Training, Consortium for Alaska Native Higher Education, Native Village of Council and the Council Native Corporation. I have also served on the Alaska Postsecondary Access and Completion Network and was an appointed review member for the University of Alaska Pathways for Community Campuses.
I enjoy berry picking, fishing, hiking, 4-wheeling, spending time at camp, going to the beach, and more. We are truly blessed for all that our land provides for us.
I truly enjoy assisting our people to advance their education and training becoming self-sufficient to support their family’s growth, health and cultural traditions. I value making a positive and meaningful change in the Bering Strait region.