Please join us in congratulating Jessica Bissett Perea for receiving the 2010 Alaska Native Visionary Award. Jessica is a first-generation college graduate and is currently a doctoral candidate in musicology at the University of California, Los Angeles. An enrolled citizen of the Knik Tribe, she specializes in North American music history from 1850 to present day, with a focus on traditional and contemporary Alaska Native song and dance, modern jazz cultures, and American traditional musics (including folk, popular, and classical).

Jessica is also presently publishing and teaching in the areas of ethnic studies, indigenous methodologies, historiography, and women, gender, and sexuality studies. Reflecting these interests, her research is broadly concerned with issues of difference in musical life, e.g. racial and gendered difference, as well as historical relationships between music and politics. In 2010 she joined the faculty of American Indian Studies at San Francisco State University.

Based on her research, the Alaska Native Heritage Month committee recognized Bissett's accomplishments and commitment to preserving culture through artistic expression.

The Alaska Native Visionary Award aims to recognize and honor Alaskan Natives who are perpetuating and preserving culture through artistic and visionary ventures such as film, photography, music, visual and literary art, and performance art. Bridging cultural traditions and technological creativity, recipients of the award give back to the rich cultural community in new, fun, and innovative ways.