Our Shareholders First

Shareholder Benefits

OUR SHAREHOLDERS FIRST Shareholder Benefits

At Bering Straits Native Corporation, we are very proud to invest in our shareholders and descendants. BSNC paid more than $9 million in shareholder benefits in FY20. BSNC employed 140 shareholders, descendants and shareholder spouses in FY20.

Shareholder dividend ($7.00 per share) – $4.4 M
Special Elders’ distribution ($1,500 per Elder) – $1.5 M
Special March dividend ($3.00 per share) – $1.8 M
Special March Elder dividend ($250 per Elder) – $254,500
Bereavement ($2,500 benefit) – $340,000

Since the passage of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act, BSNC has distributed more than $41 million in shareholder benefits.

Dividends

In addition to November 2019’s record dividend declaration of $7.00 per share, BSNC’s Board of Directors voted to declare a special March 2020 dividend of $3.00 per share and a special Elder dividend of $250 per Elder in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“In providing for a special dividend distribution, we want to do what we can to help our shareholders deal with the COVID-19 pandemic,” said BSNC President & CEO Gail R. Schubert. “We have adapted to many changes, are resilient and look out for each other. This is an important traditional cultural value.”

BSNC has distributed $35 million in dividends and special Elder distributions to shareholders since its inception. FY20 dividends were paid through the BSNC Beringia Settlement Trust and are tax free to shareholders.

Bereavement

The BSNC Beringia Settlement Trust now provides shareholder bereavement assistance in the amount of $2,500 to help defray the cost of funeral expenses for an original BSNC shareholder, a lineal descendant of an original BSNC shareholder, or the spouse of a living original BSNC shareholder. The deadline for filing for bereavement assistance is within three months of the date of death.

Scholarships

BSNC provides substantial financial support to the Beringia Settlement Trust (BST) Scholarship Program. The Beringia Settlement Trust Scholarship Program helps BSNC shareholders and their lineal descendants attain their educational and vocational goals by offering scholarship, fellowship and mentorship opportunities. BSNC doubled scholarship funding for undergraduate, graduate and vocational BST student recipients.

“BSNC is very proud to invest in its shareholders and descendants,” said BSNC President & CEO Gail R. Schubert. “I encourage our students to fully utilize available scholarships to obtain an education or training that will benefit our Region, Alaska and Our People.”

For the 2019/2020 academic year, BSNC donated $510,000 in educational funding. Since 1991, BSNC has provided more than $4 million in funding to support the postsecondary educational goals of BSNC shareholders and descendants.

Career Development

BSNC extends hiring preference to qualified shareholders, descendants and shareholder spouses as permitted under federal law. BSNC is helping prepare tomorrow’s leaders for the workforce by providing paid internships and professional development training to qualified shareholder and descendant students each summer. In FY20, BSNC invested $108,000 in its Summer Internship Program paid through wages and program-related costs. The FY20 program benefited 10 shareholders and descendants.

Campsite Program

BSNC maintains a shareholder Campsite Program, which allows shareholders to select a campsite along the Kougarok Road, east and north of Salmon Lake. All BSNC shareholders are eligible for campsites whether they live within the region or outside.

Beringia Settlement Trust

The Bering Straits Native Corporation Beringia Settlement Trust, a legally separate trust dedicated to providing benefits to BSNC shareholders, descendants and Alaska Native people, was created after shareholders overwhelmingly voted to approve a resolution establishing the Trust at the 2018 Annual Meeting of Shareholders.

FAQs Beringia Settlement Trust

What is a Settlement Trust?

Under the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act, Alaska Native Corporations can set up a special entity called a “Settlement Trust” that is legally separate from the Company and dedicated to providing benefits to shareholders, descendants and Alaska Native people. The purpose of a Settlement Trust is to provide for the health, education, cultural preservation and economic welfare of Alaska Native people and descendants who are the “beneficiaries” of the Settlement Trust.

Who are the beneficiaries of the Beringia Settlement Trust?

In order to process an address change, we must have the change in writing from you, the shareholder. This is to ensure that only you are requesting this change. If you call with an address change, we will request that you send a letter. To download our address change form go here and mail or fax it to (907) 443-2985

Can BSNC or someone else use funds from the trust for business investments or operations? How is the trust protected?

No. Once funds or assets are contributed to the Trust they may only be used for the generation and distribution of benefits to the Trust beneficiaries. The Trust may not engage in active business operations. Funds or assets in the Trust must be invested and managed only for the purpose of providing benefits to the Trust beneficiaries.

Does the trust pay Shareholder dividends?

Yes. BSNC transfers funds to the Trust which then makes the distribution to the shareholders.

What other benefits can the trust provide?

A Settlement Trust can provide a broad range of benefits including, but not limited to, Elder distributions, scholarships, training and supporting cultural preservation.

Will I have to pay taxes on distributions from the trust?

Distributions from the Trust can be made on a tax-free basis, and BSNC intends to ensure that the Trust is operated so that distributions to the beneficiaries will be tax-free.

Where does the money to put into the settlement trust come from and who decides how much will be placed into the settlement trust?

Funding of the Trust will come from BSNC. From time to time, the BSNC Board of Directors will decide how much money and what other BSNC assets should be contributed to the Trust.

How much financial information about the settlement trust will be communicated to shareholders?

Beneficiaries of the Settlement Trust, including shareholders, have a right to receive information about the Trust to the extent necessary to participate in a benefit program, as may be required by law, or as the Board of Trustees may determine. The financial statements of the Trust will be audited each year and an annual report will be prepared. The Board of Trustees will determine what information to communicate to shareholders and will coordinate with BSNC for including such information in corporate newsletters and other shareholder communications.

Why don't Shareholders get to vote on who is appointed as a Board of Trustees?

Under the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act, the BSNC Board must appoint the Trustees.

Who decides what additional benefits are provided? Do Shareholders get to vote on a new benefit?

The Board of Trustees, in conjunction with the BSNC Board of Directors, will decide whether additional benefit programs will be administered by the Trust.

If I wish to gift my shares to my children and grandchildren, after I die, will they receive dividends on my shares from the trust?

Yes.

Shareholder Benefits

Bering Straits shareholders and descendants receive an array of benefits

Our Lands

The land has provided a livelihood for the residents of the Bering Strait/Seward Peninsula/Norton Sound region.

Shareholder Services

The Shareholder Services Department manages BSNC shareholder records, dividend distributions, annual reports, election materials and newsletters.

BST Scholarship

Supporting the educational and vocational goals of Our People.

BSNC Descendants

The BSNC descendant registry is for a lineal descendant or adoptee of a BSNC shareholder.

Opportunities

BSNC is proud to invest in our shareholders and communities we serve. See the different opportunities within the company.
Bering Straits Native Corporation
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Safety for Our People

Across the BSNC family of companies, nothing is more important than the safety and well-being of our people.

OFFICESWhere to find us?
Bering Straits Native Corporation is headquartered in Nome, has a business office in Anchorage and site locations and offices across the U.S.
OUR LOCATIONS
ANCHORAGE
3301 C Street, Suite 100, Anchorage, AK 99503
NOME
PO Box 1008. 110 Front Street, Suite 300, Nome, Alaska 99762
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OFFICESBering Straits Native Corporation
OFFICESWhere to find us?
BSNC is headquartered in Nome, has a business office in Anchorage and site locations and offices across the U.S.
OUR LOCATIONSWhere to find us?
ANCHORAGE
3301 C Street, Suite 100, Anchorage, AK 99503
NOME
PO Box 1008. 110 Front Street, Suite 300, Nome, Alaska 99762
GET IN TOUCHStay Connected
Follow BSNC for news, updates, stories, and opportunities to share in this journey.
Sign up for our newsletter
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