- Associated Press - Friday, July 17, 2015

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - The former head of the Alaska Permanent Fund Corp. has died less than two months after retiring because of undisclosed health concerns.

Mike Burns was 68.

Permanent Fund Corp. spokeswoman Laura Achee (AH’-shay) says Burns died Thursday in Juneau.

Burns retired June 1, almost 11 years after joining the corporation.

Gov. Bill Walker says in a statement that Burns “led the Corporation to achieve unprecedented growth during a time of great economic difficulty.” The governor’s office says a state flag was flown Thursday in Burns’ honor over Alaska’s Capitol and will be presented to his family.

The fund is best known for its yearly dividend payouts to most Alaska residents.

Valerie Mertz is serving as acting executive director until a permanent replacement is found.

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