Heather Gurko

Education Manager

Caring for Indigenous people is deeply rooted in Heather Gurko’s core. It is a mission-driven passion that includes a commitment to educate the wider community about the Indigenous history, cultures, and ecology of our shared landscape.

Heather’s Tlingit name is Shá xat k’ei and she is an enrolled Citizen of the Central Council Tlingit & Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska from her mother’s side and Dutch on her father’s side.

Over the past thirteen years, Heather has been active in the Indigenous Civil Rights organization, Alaska Native Brotherhood (ANB) which was established in 1912. Heather is currently serving her third term as the first woman Grand President of the organization. She has served on many committees including the Beaverton School District and Hillsboro School District Native American Parent Advisory Council as a parent of Title VI students. Her previous work in the Indigenous community includes positions at CareOregon and the Native American Rehabilitation Association (NARA). Heather is also currently the Board Chair of the Portland All Nations Canoe Family, where she coordinates the organization’s cross-generational community building, cultural strengthening, and also serves to deepen our connection to the environment.

Heather attended Sheldon Jackson College in Sitka, Alaska and then attained her BA in Management and Organizational Leadership at George Fox University.

For questions regarding Confluence in the Classroom, Confluence Outdoors, and Professional Development workshops, contact her at heather@confluenceproject.org. For more info on our Education program, go here.