PUBLISHED: 5:50 PM on Wednesday, March 30, 2005
Women of Consequence: Francine Eddy Jones

Francine Eddy Jones is a Tsimshian and Eagle Wolf born and raised in Sitka, Alaska. In 1977, she graduated from the University of Utah in Salt Lake City with a Bachelor of Science cum laude. In 1979 she also earned her Master's Degree in Social Work from the University of Utah. Francine has served as the Director of the Tribal Family and Youth Services Department in Juneau since 1996. Currently, she is responsible for administering 27 grants and over $8 million in program funds.

She is the mother of Justin Jones, a member of the Juneau-Douglas High School cross-country and baseball teams, and is married to Laird Jones. She is also the sister of Nancy Douglas and Kitty Eddy, who were instrumental in developing the Tlingit Immersion program for the Juneau School District and are working tirelessly to ensure that the Tlingit culture lives on through our children. Family is very important to her, which is evident in the passion she shows in her work, continually refining the family-driven, child-focused System of Care for the families of Southeast Alaska.

For the last nine years, she has been the director and leader of the Central Council of Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska Tribal Family and Youth Services (TFYS), working with great commitment toward developing and sustaining a family-centered System of Care for Southeast Alaska.

Here are some comments about Mrs. Eddy Jones from her employees and coworkers at TFYS:

• "Francine is truly a leader who has vision, compassion for her people, and a Tlingit woman who effects positive and lasting change in whatever she is involved with."

• "For as long as I have known her she has always had a positive attitude, and when she took on a task or responsibility she has followed through with everything to a "T". I have nothing but high respect and love for this lady with vision and success for our Tribal Members."

• "Not only does she have the vision, she has the wherewithal to get us to see it too. She is a person of uncommon energy, foresight, commitment and integrity to work towards realizing that vision . . . and we all benefit from it (staff and community)."

• "Never has there been a time that Francine moved forward with her own interests in mind. She gives of herself tirelessly, managing multiple endeavors and successfully developing lasting relationships that benefit the youth, families, and agencies involved in the social services field."

• "She is kind-hearted and always willing to help people. She has taken me under her wing to help me accomplish my goals for a future career. For that I am thankful."

• "She makes time for her staff by baking special cakes in the middle of the night. All the grants she went after to benefit the communities. The training she coordinates to bring all organizations together."

As the Director of (TFYS), she has increased the departmental budget by approximately 300 percent. TFYS has programs in Wellness, Substance Abuse Awareness & Prevention, Domestic Violence, Anger Management, Senior Programs, Youth Programs, General Assistance, Energy Assistance, Indian Child Welfare Case Managers, Family and Child Counseling, Mental Health Services and a new Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) program.

Francine is the driving force behind the Southeast Native Values. Her vision is to take the wisdom of the Elders for a foundation of our present and future programs. At the 2004 Elders Forum on Traditional Values, a poster on southeast traditional tribal values "Our Way of Life" was developed and printed. This poster can be found in homes, native organizations, schools, youth facilities, senior facilities, hospitals, treatment centers, and other institutions in Southeast Alaska. One of the native values is to "Hold Each Other Up," and she truly does that.