Tonie Marie Protzman, whose Native name, Yethnhahnilats, means “makes her life strong,” is an enrolled descendant in the Turtle Clan of the Oneida Tribe in Oneida, WI. Tonie was raised in and remains in Anchorage, Alaska with her Inupiaq Eskimo daughter, Paisley.
Protzman holds a Master of Science (MS) degree in Clinical Psychology (2012) and a Bachelor’s degree in Justice and Psychology (2006) both degrees from the University of Alaska Anchorage. Since graduating with her MS, Protzman has worked for both public and private sectors of behavioral/mental health. Currently, Protzman is the Program Administrator at Cornerstone Recovery in addition to the Executive Director at the National Association of Social Workers, Alaska Chapter. Prior to NASW, Protzman was the Executive Director with the Alaska Psychological Association (AK-PA).
Moving forward, Protzman’s role as Executive Director will be to develop relationships with the NASW National Board of Directors on the organization’s strategic planning and board governance. She will also work to broaden partnerships, to expand continuing education resources that address specific needs in social worker licensing requirements and to strengthen local presence and impact around the state of Alaska.
Protzman shares she has a vocation to work with individuals and communities struggling with substance use disorders (SUD). She is passionate about disseminating information/access to care regarding SUD services to Alaska communities while reducing the stigmatism of receiving SUD services. In addition, Protzman is in the process of developing a “Safe Harbor” for the working professional in any professional field struggling with substances.
As a first-generation college student, Protzman is a devoted mentor, supporting historically underserved populations in Alaska studying higher education. Protzman mentors’ young students and professionals new to the behavioral health field with the University of Alaska Anchorage and with the Women’s Power League of Alaska.
Protzman is a dynamic and powerful American Native woman who is passionate about fulfilling Alaska’s community’s SUD needs in both prevention and gaps in services. Protzman has solid business expertise in organizational management, program development and fundraising skills, while networked throughout the State of Alaska and beyond.