Nordic-Calista Invests in Apprenticeship Program

Subsidiary Hires Shareholder for office manager apprenticeship

Storyknife, November/December 2023 edition

Calista Shareholder Kimberly Johnson of Anchorage became the first apprentice hired by our oil and gas subsidiary, Nordic-Calista LLC, in late 2023.

Johnson is excited about her new role as an office manager apprentice.

“This is an opportunity to advance myself beyond the decade of office experience and some management experience that I already have,” she says.

Johnson will take courses in business, accounting, economics and human resources necessary to complete the two-year apprenticeship and receive a certificate in business management. This certificate will put Johnson halfway to an associate degree.

Johnson says it was a big relief that she can take courses online, accommodating her on-the-job training schedule and child-care obligations. She has two young children—her oldest is in the Yup’ik immersion program at College Gate Elementary.


To Nordic-Calista leadership, and to Calista, as well, apprenticeships look like a good investment.

“We’ve been concerned about the tightening labor market in Alaska, especially in skilled trades,” explains Nordic-Calista Human Resources Manager Anne Green.

“Apprenticeships are a great way to show that we value our Shareholder employees, current workforce, and corporation by investing in growth plans and career pathways,” says Calista Workforce and Shareholder Development Manager Brenda Cangnatuq Pacarro.

“We’re happy to see our holding lines contribute to Calista’s vision, mission, and strategic goals.”


Over the past year, Nordic-Calista has been working to increase Shareholder hire while responding to the scarcity of workers available for skilled positions in Alaska.

With an apprenticeship, “you don’t come in with 100 percent of the skills needed to do the job, but you earn those, and your pay increases commensurate with your experience,” Green says.

Nordic-Calista anticipates bringing on apprentices in other trades—like HSE (health, safety, environment) and hopefully in welding and electrical work. For now, the company is getting its feet wet with the officer manager apprenticeship.

“There’s a learning curve,” Green says, adding that she had help from Calista, which had previously run an office manager apprenticeship.

“We’re able to take the original Calista job description, adapt it for our needs, and then post, screen and select an applicant.”

Nordic-Calista increased its Shareholder hire to 17 percent in the third quarter of 2023—the highest it has ever been.

“Our new workforce development and apprenticeship programs have increased our Shareholder hire, but the long-term impact of the programs is still growing,” Green says.