Andrea Canfield was raised in Alaska and graduated from Eagle River High School in 2007. Andrea attended Delaware State University and graduated with a B.A. in Political Science in 2010 and an M.B.A. in 2011. She received her J.D. from the University of Virginia School of Law in 2014. Andrea is currently an associate at Stoel Rives LLP, working with the Corporate group. Andrea’s practice involves providing advice on general commercial transactions and private securities offerings, with a particular focus on counseling Alaska-based clients in mergers and acquisitions. Before joining Stoel Rives, Andrea was a summer associate at Lane Powell PC in Anchorage (Summer 2012) and a clerk at McGuire Woods LLP in Charlottesville, Virginia (Winter 2012).
MaryLynn Macsalka, Vice President
Mary Lynn is an Assistant Attorney General for the State of Alaska, Department of Law. She counsels a diverse group of client agencies on issues including rural energy project financing, campaign finance and public official disclosure, municipal law, property tax assessment, and more. She also represents state agencies in administrative hearings, litigation, and appeals.
Before joining the Alaska Department of Law, Mary Lynn practiced municipal law in Colorado. She served as general counsel to four cities in the metro Denver area, as well as special litigation counsel to several cities in sales and use tax litigation and appeals. She has spent her entire legal career representing government entities and public servants, and enjoys the unique legal issues and nuances that are inherent in government practice. Mary Lynn received both her law degree (J.D. '08) and her undergraduate degree (Poli. Sci. '01) from the University of Colorado in Boulder.
Before moving to Alaska in early 2014, Mary Lynn was a lifelong Coloradoan. Mary Lynn and her husband enjoy spending time together with their three daughters doing outdoor activities like hiking, biking, and outings to Anchorage's dog parks with Mary Lynn's "furry kid", King, a Labrador mix she rescued in Colorado. Mary Lynn unwinds by reading, watching a favorite comedy series with her husband, and spending time with her newborn daughter.
Martha Tansik, Secretary
Martha Tansik joined Burr, Pease, & Kurtz as an associate in 2013 after serving as in-house legal counsel at Liberty Mutual’s Anchorage office, where she practiced workers’ compensation defense. Prior to Liberty Mutual and after admission to the Alaska Bar in 2011, Martha worked for the State of Alaska Public Offices Commission in campaign finance regulation. While in Seattle University’s evening law school program and in addition to her full time job, Martha interned with General Counsel at Seattle Children’s Hospital gaining experience in corporate law, licensing/compliance issues, and bioethics. As a member of the External Affairs team at Children’s Hospital, she worked closely with external counsel on the legal and political issues related to Children’s expansion master planning, land use, and municipal permitting processes.
Martha attended the American University in Washington DC for her undergraduate work in International Studies with a focus on Latin American development. Originally from North Carolina, Martha has lived and worked on three continents and is excited to now call Alaska home along with her husband and ferocious Aussie-Border Collie, Neah. Martha is an active member of Anchorage Association of Women Lawyers and of the Baha’i religious community in Anchorage.
Rebecca Patterson, Treasurer
Becca is originally from the suburbs of Chicago (go Cubs!), but has lived in Alaska since 2011. She initially settled in Juneau where she fell in love with the seaplanes landing in the channel, the mountains, the people, and the bears that roamed downtown. She later moved to Anchorage and decided to make Alaska a permanent home.
Becca joined the firm of Sonosky, Chambers, Sachse, Miller & Munson in 2013. She works in all areas of the firm’s practice, focusing principally on self-determination and self-governance issues and litigation on behalf of tribes and tribal organizations here in Alaska and in the Lower 48.
Before joining the firm, Becca clerked for Chief Justice Walter L. Carpeneti (Ret.) of the Alaska Supreme Court and Judge Sharon L. Gleason of the U.S. District Court for the District of Alaska. Becca graduated from Harvard Law School in 2011, where she served as Assistant Managing Editor for the Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review and participated in several public interest programs that assisted criminal defendants. Before law school, Becca worked as part of the immigration practice at the Legal Assistance Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago. Becca received her B.A. summa cum laude with majors in Psychology, Educational Studies and Spanish from Washington University in St. Louis in 2007.
Since moving to Alaska, Becca has volunteered as a coach with Girls on the Run, served as a teacher for Anchorage Youth Court, and helped organize the Race Judicata event on behalf of the Young Lawyers Section. Becca is a dedicated year-round bike commuter, and can often be found running, skiing, hiking, or biking on area trails.
Lynn owns her own law practice, Allingham Law Offices, PC, which focuses on business law, intellectual property, estate planning and probate.
Lynn is a past President of the Anchorage Bar Association and a delegate to the American Bar Association House of Delegates.
Lynn joined the AAWL Board in 2017.
Jenn is a Senior Assistant Attorney General for the State of Alaska in the Environmental Section. In this position, she represents the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation in both aid to agency and litigation roles. She specializes in handling sites in the State of Alaska contaminated by federal entities, whether those sites are still in federal hands or have been transferred out of federal hands. She has held this position since February of 2006. She previously worked in private practice in Boston, Massachusetts practicing environmental law at a small boutique firm representing both plaintiffs and defendants in environmental litigation and compliance. Prior to that, she practiced in Dallas, Texas where she specialized in litigating toxic tort cases. Jenn moved to Alaska in 2005. She has a J.D. from Southern Methodist University School ofLaw and a B.A. from Colgate University.
Serena was born in Homer, and raised in Anchorage. After law school, Serena returned to Alaska to clerk for Superior Court Judge Mark Rindner for two years. She then joined the Alaska Public Defender Agency and traveled throughout the state representing indigent Alaskans. Eventually she made her way to K&L Gates, where she worked on various civil matters. Since 2012, Serena has been Associate General Counsel at IBEW Local 1547. She is also the "Assistant Life Coach" to two great stepchildren, spending most of her spare time at the hockey rink or the baseball fields.
Elizabeth P. Hodes
Liz is a partner at Davis Wright Tremaine, practicing employment and labor law. She helps employers comply with laws governing a wide array of employment issues in a variety of industries, including health care, financial services, non-profit services, seafood, and hospitality. She provides advice relating to hiring and terminations, wage and hour, internal investigations, and leaves of absence, and also helps employers protect their business and goodwill by enforcing non-compete agreements and defending breach of contract, harassment, discrimination, retaliation, wrongful discharge and other employment-related claims. Liz’s diverse practice also includes cases involving corporate governance disputes, unfair trade practices, and other corporate issues. As an experienced litigator, she represents clients in agency proceedings, arbitrations, state and federal court, and before the Alaska Supreme Court, but she strives to efficiently resolve disputes and frequently achieves favorable pre-trial settlements. She has been described as “invaluable” by clients quoted in Chambers USA.
Since her husband is also an attorney, Liz and her family always take advantage of their opportunities to unwind. In her spare time, she enjoys exploring Alaska and spending time outdoors with her husband, three children, and two dogs.
Siena Caruso is an associate in the Anchorage office of Dorsey & Whitney LLP. Her practice focuses on commercial litigation, but also encompasses transactional merger and acquisition matters. Due to her experience as an associate in California prior to moving to Alaska, she continues to work on issues arising from or impacting clients in California.
Siena clerked for Justice Daniel Winfree of the Alaska Supreme Court and Judge Mark Rindner of the Anchorage Superior Court. She received her JD from University of California Berkeley Boalt Hall School of Law, and her undergraduate degree in International Development and Mandarin from University of California Los Angeles.
Elena Romerdahl, counsel in the Environment, Energy & Resources practice at Perkins Coie, is an experienced energy and natural resources attorney. Her practice focuses on oil and gas issues, project development, litigation and administrative appeals concerning environmental and natural resource issues, environmental compliance counseling, proceedings before the Regulatory Commission of Alaska and Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, and commercial agreements for resource projects.
Elena previously served as assistant attorney general in the Alaska Department of Law’s Natural Resources section.
Elena joined the AAWL Board in 2017.
Katy is the senior staff attorney at the Legal Program of the Alaska Network on Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault (ANDVSA). Katy has worked with survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault since 2001 and has been with ANDVSA since 2010. Katy represents survivors around the state, primarily in divorce, custody, and civil protection order cases. Katy also recruits and mentors pro bono attorneys, trains on legal issues related to domestic violence and sexual assault, and provides technical assistance and training to shelter advocates.
Katy graduated with honors from the University of California-Berkeley with a degree in Spanish and from New York University School of Law, magna cum laude. Prior to working for ANDVSA, Katy clerked for Justice Alex Bryner on the Alaska Supreme Court and for Judge Margaret Morrow in the Central District of California in Los Angeles. She also worked as a litigation associate at the San Francisco office of a national law firm.
Katy lives in Anchorage and enjoys hiking, skiing, reading memoirs, and avidly following the Iditarod.
Sarah Schirack is a litigator in the Anchorage Office of Perkins Coie LLP. Her practice focuses on Alaska Native Corporation issues, natural resource industries, and general litigation. Sarah is also a member of the Alaska Bar Association’s Pro Bono Committee and was one of the first attorneys to participate in the U.S. District Court for the District of Alaska’s Federal Pro Bono Project, which provides representation in prisoner civil rights cases.
Sarah clerked for Chief Justice Dana Fabe of the Alaska Supreme Court, and received her JD from Yale Law School. As part of a joint degree program, Sarah also earned a Masters of Environmental Management from the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies.
Tonja practices estate planning and business law at the firm of Woelber & Cole in Anchorage. She has served three times as Chair or Co-Chair of the Estate Planning and Probate Section of the Alaska Bar Association, and is a member and past President of the Anchorage Estate Planning Council. Tonja graduated from Harvard University in 1977 and from Northeastern University School of Law in 1980.
Over the past twenty-six years Tonja has helped individuals and families plan for their futures in a confidential and supportive atmosphere. In addition to drafting wills and trusts, she practices in the areas of protective proceedings (guardianships and conservatorships), probate and trust administration, business law, secured transactions, and real estate.
Many thanks to our recent Board members and officers: Jessica Graham, Melanie Osborne, Bonnie Paskvan, Carolyn Perkins, Sara Peterson, Chelsea Ray Riekkola, Faith Rose, Renea Saade, Lane Tucker, Christine Williams, and Teresa Ridle.