Alaska Works Partnership Inc. Construction Education & Training.


Alexis Cowell

Executive Director

Melody Austin

Office Manager

I have been with Alaska Works since 2004, when I started working in the Fairbanks office.  I moved to the Anchorage office a few years later and am still here today!

It has been a great experience to grow with Alaska Works throughout the years and to continue to be a part of the growth for the present and future.

Keri Jones

Operations Coordinator / Supervisor
(907) 569-4729 |

I started work with Alaska Works Partnership in 2015, after spending 15 years in the construction industry working as an office manager for an Elevator contractor. I am the contact for all Women in the Trades and Helmets to Hardhats classes and outreach. I enjoy my job because I like to help people and I get really excited when I see our participants get into good paying careers in the construction industry. I also enjoy assisting Transitioning Military and Veterans discover new job opportunities and providing training to enhance their search for careers outside of the military. Also my goal is to see more women accept the challenge of a career in the construction industry and embark on their journey into a nontraditional good paying career.

Tiffany Caudle

Training Coordinator
(907) 569-4704 |

Hello and welcome! I have been part of the Alaska Works Partnership (AWP) family since September of 2009 and I truly enjoy my career here. My background is in teaching and I have a passion for educating youth and adults and informing them about opportunities that can better their lives. It is extremely rewarding to be part of an organization that helps so many Alaskans find successful careers in construction through our training programs that lead them to apprenticeship and other avenues. I like helping youth and adults figure out which construction career path they will enjoy the most and succeed at. Outside of work, I enjoy spending time with my husband and daughter doing outdoor activities with our 3 dogs such as hiking, road tripping, and camping.

Nicole Pennie

(907) 569-4715 |

I first learned about Alaska Works right after I moved to Anchorage in February 2022 with my husband and 2 cats.
I attended a Women in the Trades gathering and then a Power Tools and Carpentry training. I learned that while I enjoy working with my hands, my passion was more in marketing and less in roofing or plumbing.
I love connecting with people, hearing about their dreams and goals and I am so excited I get to actually see them succeed in following those dreams and building successful careers in the construction trades.

In my free time I still like build things around the house, explore this beautiful state and chase salmon in the summer.

Mark Nusbaum

(907) 569-4734 |

I joined the team at Alaska Works in 2016, shortly after graduating with my Bachelors of Science in Psychology. I enjoy my job because I find a humble satisfaction in helping others succeed.
I also like the fact that the staff are like a great circle of friends.

If I’m not in the office, I can most likely be found in the presence of my wife, daughter and 3 dogs, exploring the Alaskan outdoors. I enjoy mountain biking, hiking, and camping.

Brian Howe


In 1993, I joined the Local Carpenters 1281 Carpenters Apprenticeship in Anchorage. In 1997 I became a Journeyman Carpenter. I worked for various contractors. In 2002-2012 I was hired as an instructor then Training Coordinator for the Southern Alaska Carpenters Training Center. I enjoyed teaching the apprentices the knowledge and skills needed to be successful in the construction industry. I’m now a proud member of the Alaska Works Partnership as a Carpenter Instructor starting in 2017.
I’m a NAVY Veteran and have a wonderful wife, two daughters and a village rescue dog named Rusty. We all enjoy the last frontier fishing, hunting, 4 wheeling, camping, biking, skiing and hiking.

Derek Homme


I am so excited to be apart of the Alaska Works Partnership team!  I started with AWP in early 2023 as their Mat-Su Valley Representative and Instructor.
I am a journeyman carpenter with 13 years experience and also have extensive experience as a workforce development professional working for the State of Alaska, Department of Labor & Workforce Development. I graduated from UAA in 2017 with an Associate’s of Applied Sciences in General Business.
I am a musician in two heavy metal bands as a vocalist and guitar player.
I am a lifelong Palmer resident and live there with my wife and two girls. I am very appreciative to be part of the Alaska Works Partnership team and am committed to bringing our representation to the Mat-Su Valley.

Please contact me if I can assist you with any of our trainings!

William Andrew


While going to college I got a part time job as a laborer on a roofing project. Once the project was completed, I knew what I wanted to do; I wanted to build! After starting my apprenticeship in 1995 and completing it in 1999, I then went on to become a part time instructor for Southern Alaska Carpenter’s Training Center. In 2008 I traded in my tools for a classroom and shop with Alaska Works Partnership. I now build careers! The sense of accomplishment can not be described when I see former students graduate from their respective apprenticeships.

Joanna Makar

Women in the Trades Case Manager

(907) 569-4727 |

I am excited to have started with AWP in 2019! In 2011 I made the decision to make a career change. I applied for and got into the Women In the Trades training and I fell in love! I then went on to apply for the Piledrivers and Divers Union, Local 2520 and got accepted in 2013. I got my journeyman’s card in 2015. I’ve worked all over Alaska and for several different contractors. Whenever I got asked how I got interested or started in construction I would always talk about Alaska Works. I love helping people find their niche in the work force and I love seeing that spark and seeing it “click” when they figure out construction is what they want to do.  I’m overjoyed to be a part of the team and have come full circle!

When I’m not in the office, you can catch me at the movies, traveling, road tripping, hiking, and spending time with my family and friends.

Jason Wall

Helmets to Hardhats Case Manager

(907) 569-4713 |

I was born and raised in Portland Oregon.  I enlisted in the Marine Corps from 2007 through 2015 and then enlisted in the Army from 2016 until September of 2021.  While in the Army I was stationed in JBER and fell in love with Alaska and all it has to offer so I decided to make it my permanent home.  I currently attend Wayland Baptist University and I’m pursuing a BAS in Business Administration.  I am passionate about helping Veteran’s transition back into civilian life by providing a means to a stable and worthwhile career in the trades.

Megan Gonzalez

Eligibility & Support Team

(907) 569-4721 |

I graduated in 2014 with an associate degree in Business Management. The urge to find a career that aligned with my passion for helping others is something that I have been working towards since. Alaska Works has given me the opportunity to do just that, and I couldn’t be happier. I look forward to helping others excel in life and work towards a better future.

In my spare time I enjoy watching movies and getting outside with my son, and two dogs.

Wade Stark

(907) 457-3762 |

In 1988, I joined the Local 1243 Carpenters Apprenticeship in Fairbanks. In 1992, I became a Journeyman Carpenter. From there, I was a Journeyman, Foreman, Instructor, and then the Training Coordinator for Local 1243. In 2008, I was hired by Alaska Works to be an Instructor. What I enjoy most about my job is giving others the same opportunity I had; a great career in the construction industry.

In my spare time, I like to hike, travel, and watch football and motor sports.