2023 Annual Report
Downtown Fairbanks is a vital and attractive center of business and community.
Maintain the vitality of and improving the overall quality of life in downtown Fairbanks, while at the same time identify and fill critical social service gaps, lessening the burdens of government.
The Downtown Association of Fairbanks Community Services (DAFCS) encourages downtown’s improvement to benefit the Fairbanks community, advocates for city services and public and private investment downtown, and hosts major community events. In a public health/public safety connection, the Downtown Association is an important funding partner with the City of Fairbanks to provide the Community Service Patrol program.
Activities in 2023:
- Thanks to some of you reading this, we continued as a financial partner with the City of Fairbanks, contributing $110,280 of monies we aggregate from donors in the private sector and via grants to field the Community Service Patrol so that downtown and the community have a better response to the intensive needs of chronically inebriated people.
- Hosted the 12th annual Solstice Fireworks Downtown as the finale to the Winter Solstice Festival with presenting sponsor Alyeska Pipeline Service Company. To build a deeper, more engaging winter event downtown, we continued to work with partners we convened in 2022 to build a winter solstice Festival: Borough Parks and Rec, Fairbanks Economic Development Corporation and Morris Thompson Center.
- Attended quarterly meetings with the City mayor to seek policy and budgetary responses to improve snow removal, downtown security, and the city’s response to nuisance properties, as well as stay updated on the Polaris demolition, and seek city engagement in the Borough’s economic development plan for downtown.
- Supported City Council efforts to increase the city’s capacity to serve downtown and the community:
- an ordinance to incentivize applicants to long-vacant positions in the city’s Building Department
- the return of the summer “beat cop” David Elzey to downtown and Golden Heart Plaza
- changes to the bed tax formula to create a source of revenue for city expenditures on measures that support economic development and tourism.
- Continued to assist the Borough’s efforts to write a new economic development plan for downtown.
- Served on Mayor Pruhs’ Polaris Working Group to seek redevelopment of that site.
- Held two major gatherings of the membership – the Summer Planning meeting in April and the Annual Meeting in November.
- Hosted the 41st annual Midnight Sun Festival on June 24th with presenting sponsor TOTE Maritime;
- Completed the dissolution of our other duplicative 501c4 nonprofit, to operate more efficiently.
The DAFCS continues to be led by a board of directors invested in downtown with the community’s best interest at heart. They are always interested to learn what your business or downtown needs to grow. Board meetings fall on the 2nd Wednesday of each month from 3-5 PM in Usibelli conference room at 100 Cushman Street, Suite 210, and are open to the membership (or anyone with advanced notice).
Board members serving in 2023-2024: Chris Miller, President; Buki Wright, Vice President, Christine Luper, Secretary; Steve Johnson, Treasurer; and members Frank Eagle, Jackson Fox, Dave Hayden, Sarah Hollister, Ron Johnson, Chad Roberts, Sue Sprinkle; elected from the floor on November 29th were new board members Meghan Heim and Ella Warner.