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Jaeleen Kookesh

Guest Speaker

Professional affiliation

Vice President, Policy & Legal Affairs, Sealaska

Full Biography

Jaeleen Kookesh currently serves as the Vice President of Policy & Legal Affairs for Sealaska. She leads Sealaska’s public policy efforts, advocating for Alaska Native rights and privileges at local, state and national levels. Her work focuses primarily on subsistence rights, land allotments, and rural area education. She also oversees shareholder board of directors’ elections annually. She carries two clan names from the L’eeneidí (Dog Salmon) Central house in Angoon including Kajoohein and Kinagoo.ut. She is a child of the Teikweidí (Brown Bear) Clan.

Jaeleen’s father, the late Albert Kookesh was Tlingit/Eagle, Teikweidí (Brown Bear clan), L’eeneidí yádi (child of). He was a member of the Sealaska Board of Directors from 1976 to 2021 and served as board chair from 2000 to 2014. He also served as Sealaska’s representative to the Alaska Federation of Natives.

Jaeleen’s father was also the former policy and program specialist at the Office of the Governor for the State of Alaska; a former senator for District C and served in the Alaska State legislature, both House and Senate for 16 years; former AFN chair, former ANB Grand President, a member of the Alaska Native Brotherhood Grand Camp executive committee, and a director of First Alaskans Institute.