KYUK AM

Johanna Eurich

Managing Editor

Johanna Eurich's vivid broadcast productions have been widely heard on National Public Radio since 1978. She spent her childhood speaking Thai, then learned English as a teenager and was educated at a dance academy, boarding schools and with leading intellectuals at her grandparents' dinner table in Philadelphia.

Eurich learned broadcasting in 1974 and helped advocate for the work of independent radio producers and stations. She moved to Alaska to be News Director of KSKA in Anchorage after helping put WVMR on the air - a solar heated radio station in one of the poorest parts of Appalachia. 

She has worked for the Alaska Public Radio Network, KTNA in Talkeetna, KDLG in Dillingham, as well as periods at KCUK, in Chevak and KBRW in Barrow. She was at KYUK in 1996 and returned as Managing Editor in 2016.

Katie Basile / KYUK

Bethel students may have thought that they were going to school on Tuesday, Sept. 8, but the likelihood that COVID-19 was potentially spreading in the community prompted the Lower Kuskokwim School District to continue “at-home” schooling under what they call “high-risk” status.  Superintendent Kimberly Hankins says that it’s not clear when they will be able to have school taking place in Bethel classrooms again. 

Alaska State Troopers

A state trooper has solved a problem that has plagued law enforcement in the Bethel region for decades: access. When there is an accident or any event that requires Alaska State Troopers to help, their response has been limited by flight or river conditions. If the event occurs during breakup or freeze up, the river can be unsafe for travel, and troopers have to wait for a break in the weather to fly in to help. Not anymore. Troopers now have an option that they did not have before.


Free Airport testing at Bethel, Alaska.
Katie Basile / KYUK

Arriving flights, cab drivers, and passengers are beginning to pick up new practices. During a special meeting on Monday, Aug. 31, the Bethel City Council mandated testing at the Bethel Airport, required masks in public spaces, and instituted a 14-day quarantine for people traveling into Bethel.

Anna Rose MacArthur / KYUK

Bethel’s Winter House, the place where the town’s homeless can come in out of the cold, will be a lot more than that in the future. Organizers are using CARES Act funding to open a year-round facility to provide the homeless more than a place to sleep and a hot meal.

Orutsararmiut Native Council

There is over $13 million available in CARES Act funding for Bethel tribal members, but ONC says that applicants need to use the mail, internet, or phone to apply for it as soon as possible.

A gillnet on the river
Katie Basile / KYUK

It’s official. The Yukon River’s fall chum salmon run is shaping up to be the lowest run on record. 

A young boy picks up his breakfast and lunch from a "Meals on Wheels" bus set-up by the Lower Kuskokwim School District during state mandated school closures. March 23, 2020 in Bethel, Alaska.
Katie Basile / KYUK

On Monday, Aug. 24, the first day of school, Bethel students will remain at home instead of heading to classrooms. School administrators hope that the kids will be able to come into classrooms part-time by Sept. 8, as originally planned. Lower Kuskokwim School District Superintendent Kimberly Hankins says that this will depend on whether the recent spike of coronavirus cases is contained.

Free Airport testing at Bethel, Alaska.
Katie Basile / KYUK

The head of the Yukon-Kuskokwim Health Corporation says that it’s time to put more teeth in the area’s COVID-19 prevention measures, and he says that both the state and the city have the power to do it. Dan Winkelman, the Chief Executive Officer and President of YKHC, says that the state and city should mandate COVID-19 testing for both state workers and private employees traveling into bush communities. 

Ethan Sundown / KYUK

Limited in-person schooling, sports, and after-school activities are all scheduled to begin Aug. 24 for Lower Kuskokwim School District students. But Superintendent Kimberly Hankins says that the district is keeping an eye on the recent surge in cases of COVID-19 in the region.

Greg Lincoln / Delta Discovery

Kids going to school in the Lower Kuskokwim School District this year will be spending the entire time with the same small group of students, 12 or less, according to the plan described by Superintendent Kimberly Hankins. It will mean that students will be spending most of the time in classrooms together, and even eating lunch there. It’s called a “cohort” system.

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