Donald Nokinba "Nok" Acker

Former Assistant Logistics Coordinator, BASC, Utqiagvik, Alaska

Donald “Nok” Acker from Allakaket, AK, lives in Barrow (Utqiagvik), AK. “Nok” is short for Nokinba, which in Athabascan means “Snowy Owl,” a name his parents gave him at birth. Here he talked about his love for the cold and especially for the ice. When we met him he was coordinating logistics for the Barrow Arctic Science Consortium, BASC, and helped scientists stay safe on the ice. He talked about polar bears and the knowledge you have to have in order to go out on the ice safely.



This is an interview with Donald Frederick Acker, also known as Kokinba or “Nok.” From Alakakit, Alaska, Nok has been living in Barrow (now called Utqiaġvik) since 1999. When this clip was made Nok was working for the Barrow Arctic Science Consortium (BASC), a nonprofit research support organization. He explains that his name is derived from an Athabascan word that means snowy owl, which was given to him by his parents. He talks about the differences between his culture and others, mainly regarding their source of food. He loves living in the Arctic, despite the extreme cold, and enjoys whaling, fishing, and documenting his experiences on YouTube. Nok is married and has three children whom he loves spending time with. He also mentions that whaling is a dangerous activity, and it is essential to have experienced crew members to ensure safety.

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