This week’s post is second in our series of 2009 faculty introductions. Meet June Pardue, who will teach our Alaska Native classes this summer.
June Pardue was born in Old Harbor Village on Kodiak Island. Her father, the late Jacob Simeonoff, Sr., was a fisherman of Alutiiq and Russian descent. He played the guitar and sang old Russian songs, but his favorite thing to do was play music while listening to Chet Atkins records. This is where June got her talent for composing Alutiiq songs for her dance group. June’s mother, Sophia, is Inupiag and Austrian Jew; she made her own patterns for clothing and it is from her that June learned to make Native regalia. Besides skin sewing and Native clothing design, June is known for her Alutiiq grass baskets, Native jewelry, fish skin bags, and qayaq skin sewing. June has taught at over twenty locations in Alaska and has been an invited guest of the United Nations in New York and the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C.