The Kenaitze Indian Tribe was federally recognized as a sovereign, independent nation in 1971 under the Indian Reorganization Act as amended for Alaska. Today, we have more than 1,800 Tribal Members who live across the Kenai Peninsula and beyond. We employ about 300 employees.
The Tribe delivers a variety of programs and services that promote the wellness of our people and the community. In 2014, we opened the 52,000-square-foot Dena’ina Wellness Center, an integrated healthcare facility offering a wide range of services beneath one roof. We also operate a tribal justice system, early childhood education center, Elders center, social services program, and more. A 67,00-square-foot education campus building is under construction in Kenai.
At our Annual General Council Meeting every October, we elect Tribal Members to the Tribal Council to serve staggered two-year terms. The seven-member Council governs the Tribe in accordance with our constitution, by-laws, ordinances and resolutions. It appoints a Chief Judge to oversee Tribal Court and uphold Tribal laws, and an Executive Director of Tribal Administration to manage the Tribe’s day-to-day operations.
Our funding comes from federal, state and private grants, and third-party revenue generated by our healthcare programs.
It’s been thousands of years since our people, the Kahtnuht’ana Dena’ina, first inhabited the Kenai Peninsula. We call this area Yaghanen, the good land. After many challenges throughout the years, today we are proud to say Naqantugheduł – the tide is coming in. We say the tide is coming in because it’s an exciting time for the Tribe and our people as we continue to work toward our mission: To assure Kahtnuht’ana Dena’ina thrive forever.