Candidate for the Ketchikan
Gateway Borough Assembly - Three Year Term
September 22, 2005
Background - Statement
I was born and raised in Ketchikan.
My family lived near what is now The Narrows Inn when North Tongass
was a dirt road.
By age nine I was traveling by boat to and from Gravina Island
where my family had begun to relocate. I accrued numerous boating
hours crossing Tongass Narrows to catch the bus to High School.
My mother instilled in me fiscal responsibility, honesty and
integrity by making sure I did my share of providing for our
family by hunting, fishing and help with farm chores.
At the University of Alaska in addition to earning a degree in
general science, my time with the college cross country ski team
and mountaineering clubs taught me the value of perseverance,
it also opened doors to experiencing other cultures and a life-long
interest in travel and adventure.
I traveled with the U.S. Army biathlon team throughout the country
as well as Europe and Scandinavia. I have skied the Iditarod
Trail. I have mountaineered extensively in the Alaska Range including
Denali, and even a trip to Argentina. Having been to other parts
of the world has shown me the importance of respect for the place
I grew up in beyond simply as a commodity to be bought and sold.
I've seen a lot of changes in this community and not all
of it good but no matter where I ventured I always returned to
this place and now make my living off its abundant resources.
As a small sawmill operator and commercial dive fisherman I realize
that protecting the environment is not about protecting the fishes
and the birds for their own sake. It's about recognizing that
nature is the ultimate infrastructure of our community and
that if we want to meet our obligation as a generation, as a
civilization, we must create a community for our children
that provides them with the same opportunities for dignity and
enrichment and good health that my mother gave to me. I'd
like to see our community learn from its history and move
ahead in a way that sustains a healthy connection with the land,
which is the source of our values, virtues and character as Alaskans.
Patchworks! An organization
committed to building assets in our youth
Big Brothers/Big Sisters
First City Toastmasters
Ketchikan Trails Coalition
Leask Users Coalition
Resource Advisory Committee
Southeast Alaska Regional Dive Fisherman's Association (SARDFA)
Tongass Conservation Society
Southeast Alaska Conservation Council
If you share these values and goals
and please vote for Mike Sallee on Oct 4th
Stories In The News