Northern Air Cargo (NAC) hosted a customer appreciation event yesterday, July 11th, in Nome with giveaways, food, and a meet and greet with NAC-sponsored athletes Mike Morgan and Aaron Burmeister.
NAC is the state’s largest, all-cargo airline and has been servicing Alaska since 1956. The company ships freight and cargo from their Anchorage hub to ten communities throughout the state including Nome, Kotzebue, Unalakleet and Deadhorse. Earlier this week, the company was voted “Best Cargo/Logistics Provider in Alaska” in the 2023 Alaska Business Magazine Best of Alaska Business Award.
NAC specializes in transporting all freight including live animals, overweight freight, declared hazardous materials and vehicles. The company also provides flag stops, charters, pick up and delivery services, and consolidation services.
Sponsored athlete, Mike Morgan, was born in Nome and is a multi-time Iron Dog champion with his partner, Chris Olds. NAC has been a sponsor of the Iron Dog since its first race in 1982 with the tagline, “teamwork that delivers,” and has sponsored Morgan’s team for several years. The sponsorship with NAC makes it possible for them to deliver sleds and equipment, Morgan says.
“You know, we’re shipping machines all over the state for our different events. We’re training up here on the coast where there’s no roads going anywhere in Alaska. So we’re pretty remote out here in these places. And we rely on people like NAC and partner with NAC to help us deliver our sleds and our equipment to where we need them to be. So we can, in the end, be successful and win.”
He adds having teamwork in a small community is important and that Alaskans are always willing to help fellow Alaskans.
“Everybody in Alaska is always kind of willing to help each other out, you know. You see people stuck in the snow banks, nine times out of ten, an Alaskan is gonna be the kind one to help, Alaska just has that vibe. So it just kind of goes hand in hand with our culture and traditions here in Alaska, I guess you can say.”
Sponsored athlete and veteran Iditarod competitor, Aaron Burmeister was sponsored by NAC during the 2020 Iditarod. In 2020, he was awarded the Northern Air Cargo Herbie Nayokpuk Memorial Award for his sportsmanship and positive attitude to other competitors. The award is given in honor of Herbie Nayokpuk who competed in 11 Iditarod races, including the very first. The award recipient is chosen by race checkers along the Norton Sound leg of the trail. Burmeister says that having a positive attitude in the Iditarod is key because it’s a team effort.
“You have to keep a positive attitude for yourself and for the dogs, because it’s teamwork when you’re working with the dogs. And so that teamwork, your attitude is reflected on everybody around you and your dogs pick up on it before you even open your mouth. They can tell by just the way you’re walking, your footsteps and by your communication with them. And it’s no different than teamwork when you’re working with people.”
Being born and raised in Nome, he is happy to be giving back to the community.
“Getting to give back to the community is wonderful. I mean, that’s part of the community that helped to raise me and being able to give back any way we can while we’re racing, traveling and talking to kids or visiting schools, we’re just taking that extra time.”
NAC thanks their Nome customers for their business. The free event lasted from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. with hot dogs, chips, soft drinks and fun. Food and giveaways were donated by NAC, Hanson’s Trading/ Safeway, and The Odom Corporation.
Photo at top: NAC customer appreciation day outside of Hanson Trading Co. Photo by Ava White