Who We Are

The 49SAF's mission is to:

  • Provide an evergreen source of capital to high-growth  businesses, promoting entrepreneurship and fostering innovation, and creating jobs and economic benefit for Anchorage

  • Strengthen Alaska's risk capital and entrepreneurial ecosystem

  • Assist early-stage and disadvantaged businesses


Our History

Our History

Started in 2012 by a $13.2 million allocation from US Department of Treasury's State Small Business  Credit Initiative, 49SAF is a venture capital function run by the Municipality of Anchorage. We work with Partner Funds to provide a dollar for dollar, private to public funding match for investments. Fund managers in turn provide managerial and entrepreneurial expertise to their investees, creating economic benefit for the citizens of Anchorage.


Partner Funds

The 49th State Angel Fund makes most of its capital available through partner funds.


After undergoing a thorough process from 49SAF, partner funds generally secure private capital which matches 49SAF’s investment into the entity (for example: $2 million from 49SAF in addition to $2 million from private capital). Then local professionals run the partner fund, investing in Anchorage businesses.

Current Partner Funds are below.

Alaska Accelerator Fund


An early-stage fund that seeks to “accelerate” and add value to startups by leveraging the experience of managers, advisors and angel investors. Target portfolio companies are at the plan or prototype stage.

Managers: Al Hermann, Forrest Nabors, Ky Holland, Katherine Jernstrom, Lori Davey

Investment Range: $50,000 – $340,000


49th Fund


A fund focused on financing high-growth businesses. Welcomes manufacturing, technology and import substitution opportunities; considers other sectors. Target portfolio companies are post revenue.

Managers: Jamie Kenworthy, Carol Howarth, Judith Bassoul

Investment Range: $200,000 – $400,000

Contact: jamiek@49thfund.com , carolh@49thfund.com , judithb@49thfund.com

Opportunity Fund


A fund that increases financial capacity at proven firms seeking to expand operations. Target portfolio companies are more mature, with a preference for five years or more of operating history.

Managers: Mark Kroloff, Jonathan Rubini, Jimmy Miner

Investment Range: $200,000 and up

Contact: jminer@jlproperties.com

Anchorage Equity Partners


A flexibly structured fund that can invest in a wide variety of firms. Target portfolio companies are generally those with at least one full year of revenue history, or firms in need of capital raises in excess of $1 million, or with multiple investing partners.

Managers: Neil Gunn, Paul Wiltse

Investment Range: $250,000 and up

Contact: ngunn@venturenorthgroup.com and pwiltse@venturenorthgroup.com

Launch Alaska

Acceleration / Seed+

A fund that invests in startups looking to transform the fields of energy, food, water, and transportation systems. Target companies are in the plan, prototype, or development stage.

Managers: Isaac Vanderburg, Alyse Daunis, Frances Ball

Investment Range: $75,000

Contact: isaac@launchalaska.comalyse@launchalaska.comfrances@launchalaska.com


Who We Are


Joe Morrison

Mr. Morrison is a four-time founder: Of DealBoss, of Biz21 Consulting, of Launch: Alaska, and of the 49th State Angel Fund, as the initial staff person to create and manage the program from its inception (2012 - 2014). He returned to manage the fund in 2017. 

Christopher Richardson 
Cash Management and Investments Officer

Mr. Richardson managed the 49th State Angel Fund from late 2014 - 2016 and continues to work on various matters for the venture capital function. 

Advisory Committee

Meeting between four and twelve times a year, the 49th State Angel Fund Advisory Committee reviews potential investment opportunities when appropriate and makes a variety of recommendations on the program to the Mayor and CFO.


Meetings are usually held the third thursday of each month at 3 p.m. in the Mayor's Conference Room (Suite 830) at City Hall; please contact the 49SAF office (e-mail morrisonjn@muni.org) to confirm an upcoming meeting date.

Advisory Committee members are:



Mr. Bill Popp - Anchorage Economic Development Corporation


Mr. Popp has over 35 years of Alaska public and private sector experience. He has marketed cities, advised mayors on resource development, held elected positions and owned a small business.


Mr. Rick Nerland - formerly of Spawn Ideas:

Vice Chair

Mr. Nerland owned and led one of Alaska’s largest advertising and public relations agencies for over 20 years.


Ms. Christi BellBusiness Enterprise Institute at the University of Alaska, Anchorage

Ms. Bell, who holds a Certificate in Economic Development from the International Economic Development Council as well as an MBA and a Master of Science in Resource Management, leads the University's economic development suite of programs. 


Mr. Mead TreadwellPT Capital

In addition to his expertise in private equity, Mr. Treadwell has a strong history of public service, having served as Alaska's Lieutenant Governor. He has also been an investor, director and officer of technology companies. 


Ms. Cortney KitchenKitchen Legal, LLC

In 2015, Cortney started Kitchen Legal, LLC, an Anchorage law firm focusing on land use, natural resource, and property law, as well as business formation. Cortney is a founding member and director of Denali Rescue Volunteers, an Alaska non-profit supporting the rescue, medical, and clean-up efforts conducted on Denali each climbing season. 


Mr. Stephen TrimbleArctic Solar Ventures

Mr. Trimble is Founder and CEO of Alaska's first clean energy development company. He has served on boards of the Nature Conservancy, the Alaska Arctic Policy Commission, the Alaska Minerals Commission, the UAA Geoscience Advisory Board, the UAA College of Arts & Sciences Advisory Board, and the Alaska Emerging Energy Technology Fund.

Mr. Kevin Croy - 9 Mile Labs

Mr. Croy graduated six cohorts from his 9Mile Labs startup accelerator before transforming his company into a seed-stage venture capital fund. As an entrepreneur, Mr. Croy has co-founded five startups, two of which (Lostpedia, Jupiter Hosting) he sold successfully.

Mr. Thom HolderCook Inlet Region, Inc 

Mr. Holder has worked in high technology for close to 30 years, 22 of which was at Intel Corporation. During his career Mr. Holder has been responsible for venture investments, merger and acquisition transactions, and leadership roles. Today as Vice President of Business Development and Operations, Mr. Holder helps lead business transactions for Cook Inlet Region, Inc.


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The 49th State Angel Fund is a government function. All rights reserved 2018.