U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services held a naturalization ceremony for 46 people at the Anchorage Assembly Chambers at the Loussac Library on Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2017. The city of Anchorage hosted the event as one of several National Welcoming Week events to honor Anchorage's diverse population.
Dr. Mara Kimmel, wife of Anchorage Mayor Ethan Berkowitz, acknowledged the difficult and expensive path that many traveled toward citizenship. "Remember the people from a hundred years ago. Remember the paths of your ancestors that took you to this place where you are right now," she said.
Kimmel also emphasized the importance of registering to vote. "That's your true power and your true responsibility as a U.S. citizen from this day forward." Anchorage Assembly chair Dick Traini, who also spoke at the event, encouraged the new citizens to return to Assembly chambers. "Come and talk to us," he said. "That's your right as a citizen." U.S. District Court Judge Ralph Beistline officiated the event.
Meet 19 people who became U.S. citizens at the event in this slideshow.