Invigorating civic engagement through
community conversation and storytelling

As a part of the national "Why It Matters: Civic and Electoral Participation" initiative, administered by the Federation of State Humanities Councils and funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Forum 

supported a series of events and activities around voting, engagement, and democracy to strengthen civic connection and participation throughout Alaska.

Across the country, this initiative included exhibitions, explorations of history, public panels, and radio talk shows oriented around civic engagement in our democracy. 

The Forum invited Alaskans to join in on the conversation.  Below are some of the initiative's results.

Check Out.

Alaskans from across the state submitted voting stories to our multimedia collection. These stories will be transferred to the University of Alaska's Archives and Special Collections after a year to preserve and honor the voices that contributed. 


The Forum hosted several events throughout the winter and spring of 2021 to bring people together to talk, think, and listen. These tough conversations that are core to our democracy were graphically documented and resulted in this gallery.


To deepen the discussion on civic engagement, we partnered with the Alaska Center to produce three episodes of The Togetherings around the theme of representation. The Togetherings are recorded conversations with Alaskans from all walks of life sharing their perspectives on big questions and diving into what matters from their point of view.

A Special Thanks.

Anyone who submitted a story or hosted a Voting Story Circle received our Why It Matters thank you package with original stickers designed by Alaska artists Ted Kim and Alyssa Quintyne, a conversation card deck, and an AKHF notebook.