‘Extra Tough’ refreshes the Northern story—past, present and future—with women’s values and sensibilities

‘Harbourage for a Song’ by Meryl McMaster: Plains Cree and European artist Meryl McMaster poses on the northern peninsula of Newfoundland, a first point of contact between indigenous and Norse peoples over 1,000 years ago. Canaries in her headdress are not a native species. and represent displacement. (Image courtesy of ‘Extra Tough,’ Anchorage Museum)
‘Meq’ by Amber Webb appears in ‘Extra Tough.’

In early November, in the midst of a pandemic, the Anchorage Museum welcomed visitors to ‘Extra Tough: Women of the North.” With constraints, the museum has been able to invite visitors to view the exhibit several days each week. Beginning December 1, the museum, like much of Anchorage, will return to a closed phase for a period of weeks. The good news is, this exhibit will be available through September, 2021. So like many of the restrictions we feel right now, this closure can be righted once Covid numbers decline. We have time to visit this intriguing exhibit.

Biographies of Alaska women in the exhibit

Today’s edition of Hometown Alaska shares the voices of women whose work is featured in the exhibit, from culture bearers bringing supportive traditional birthing practices to the foreground again, to artists, scientists and makers representing a woman’s perspective on work, on sustainability, on relationships. Let this be a taste of what you can experience when viewing the exhibit with your own eyes and ears in future weeks.

As always, your questions and comments are welcome throughout the program. Please join us!

HOST: Kathleen McCoy


  • Francesca DuBrock, Chief Curator, Anchorage Museum
  • Alaska Native Birthworkers Community members, Moh David, Stacey Lucason, Abra Patkotak
  • Laurie Wolf, Foraker Group, on women’s wages
  • Amber Webb, Alaska Native artist, calling in from Dillingham


  • Extra Tough: Women of the North’ exhibit landing page on the web
  • Profiles of Alaska’s ‘Extra Tough’ women, from pilots to artists to advocates to change makers, web page with images and bios
  • ‘Extra Tough’ online events in December: Artists Merritt Johnson and Tsema Igharas, 12.4, 5 pm; Artists Susan Joy Share and Betany Porter, 12.9, 5 pm Registration page
  • Facebook, Anchorage Museum, for links to ongoing online events, webpage
  • Bunnell Gallery conversation, Isolation and Inspiration, with Amber Webb and two otber artists speaking, listen here
  • Bunnell Gallery conversation, Isolation and Inspiration, with Francesca DuBrock. Scroll on this page to find her conversation with fellow curator David Walsh
  • Facebook page for Alaska Native Birthworkers Community, web page
  • Alaska Native Birthworkers Community website
  • Native Movement website, promoting gender justice and environmental justice, website
  • The 49th State ranks first when it comes to women entrepreneurs, 11.27.2018, UAA News
  • Gender Gap, The Foraker Group presents gender pay gap data with information from Alaska Dept of Labor, UA Center for Economic Development, graphic website


  • Call 550-8433 (Anchorage) or 1-888-353-5752 (statewide) during the live broadcast (2:00 – 3:00pm)
  • Send e-mail to hometown@alaskapublic.org before, during or after the live broadcast (e-mails may be read on air)
  • Post your comment or question below (comments may be read on air
  • LIVE: Monday, November 30, 2020 at 2:00 p.m
  • RE-AIR: Monday, November 30, 2020 at 8:00 p.m.

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