Jacqualine Qataliña Schaeffer
Jacqualine Qataliña Schaeffer is an Iňupiaq from Kotzebue, Alaska. She studied Interior Design & Sustainable Building in London and the U.S. She is currently a Senior Project Manager for the Division of Environmental Health and Engineering at the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium. She has worked in comprehensive planning, energy, housing and water/sanitation in rural communities across Alaska, utilizing a holistic approach to project development. Her passion has led her to infuse traditional Inuit knowledge into strategic planning to change the “top down” approach into a locally-driven, grassroots approach. This innovative approach allows local leadership to be empowered to own and lead the discussions and decision making. Her background in design and sustainable building science allows a perspective that places the “end user” at the center of change. Qataliña believes her ancestors’ traditional knowledge will help bridge gaps in our multi-cultural lifestyles and create balance in how we adapt to our rapidly changing climate. Her current work includes innovation sanitation solutions for unserved communities, tribal resiliency adaptation planning, and community engagement for community relocations due to climate impacts.
Qataliña also works with various indigenous groups to revitalize the return of traditional practices, including Inupiaq language, traditional healing treatments, medicinal plants, harvesting practices, storytelling, skin sewing skillsets, and dancing. Her commitment to serving the indigenous people of Alaska allows her to utilize a variety of skills and talents.