BETHEL, Alaska (AP) – A village police officer in western Alaska was chosen to receive the Shirley Demientieff Award for her efforts in improving the lives of Alaska Native women and children.

KYUK-AM reports Gov. Bill Walker is scheduled to present the award Thursday to Mountain Village Officer Anna Bill at the Alaska Federation of Natives Convention in Anchorage.

Bill had gone back to work a couple days before Walker called her, telling her she was the recipient. Bill had resigned from the job while on medical leave, but she says residents encouraged her to return.

Bill was previously the village’s only law enforcement officer, staying on call around the clock and volunteering her extra hours.

She says she hopes the award will motive government officials to better fund public safety in rural Alaska.

Information from: KYUK-AM,

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