Meet the Staff
ED WARD, General Manager
Ed was raised in Kodiak and is of native Alutiiq descent. Throughout his 40-year storied career he has commercial fished the waters from Kodiak to the Bering Sea for crab, salmon, bottomfish and halibut, co-founded Kenai Coastal Tours to operate wildlife and glaciers tours to the Kenai Fjords National Park onboard an innovative high-speed and stabilized 149 passenger vessel he helped design. Ed served as CEO for his native village corporation until he was lured away to Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory to work on a DARPA-funded research project to develop a hydrogen gas launcher system capable of launching satellites and other consumables into low earth orbit. After the DARPA project Ed was recruited by ENSTAR Natural Gas in Anchorage, Alaska as their Distribution Supervisor to oversee all distribution pipeline construction and gas service to over 345,000 customers. Ed’s prior workplace experiences coupled with the broad base of competencies he has acquired over the years brought him full circle back to his roots in Kodiak when he was recruited in 2010 by his native regional corporation, Koniag, Inc., to help design, construct and manage a world class, multipurpose facility (the Kodiak Brown Bear Center) on their native ancestral Alutiiq homelands in the Karluk Basin. Ed is proud to manage this special place that embodies their native Alutiiq culture and heritage and serves as a platform and base for guided bear viewing, fishing, meetings, Alutiiq cultural and preservation activities and wildlife and environmental studies.
NATASHA PANAMARIOFF, Head Chef
Tasha was born and raised in Ouzinkie, Alaska, a coastal village on Spruce Island near Kodiak city. She comes from a family of cooks and her kitchen experience started early, standing on a chair watching her mother and grandmother at work. Tasha relishes remote living in the place her Alutiiq ancestors called home. She enjoys talking to guests from all over the world and sharing stories of her life growing up in a small, remote community. Her love of her culture and environment led her to become an advocate and protector of all that she holds dear.
MEGHAN KELLY, Reservations and Guest Services
Meghan is from the flatlands in the middle of the country. Friends and family were fantastic in that part of the world, but the terrain left something to be desired so she went to law school and moved north to the state with the most people who were hiding from the law. She now spends her time trying to keep all of us out of trouble and ensuring that your reservations are handled efficiently and professionally.
JON DEACON PANAMAROFF, Chief Executive Officer
Jon Panamaroff had the honor of being born and raised on Kodiak Island & the Kenai Peninsula. Prior to joining the corporate ranks Jon worked as a commercial fisherman & logger throughout Alaska. He is an enrolled member of the Sun’aq Tribe of Kodiak and a Shareholder of Koniag, Inc. On top of his work at KBBC, Jon also served as the Chief Compliance Officer and Senior Vice President of Koniag Government Services. When not working with his teammates at KBBC and supporting his Kodiak community you will find him having fun with his Alutiiq children, Katelyn & Trevor, and his high school sweetheart, Kelly.
VIC BARNES, Guide
Vic was raised in Colorado, attended Colorado State University, and then spent 32 years as a research wildlife biologist with the Department of Interior. His last 16 years were spent in Kodiak conducting studies on population ecology. bear viewing, and habitat use of Kodiak bears. He has worked on a variety wildlife species, including black bears, polar bears and brown/grizzly bears. He currently is manager of the Kodiak Brown Bear Trust.