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Alaska congressional delegation congratulates appointees to Alaska Salmon Research Task Force

Michael Humling
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

On Aug. 31, Alaska’s congressional delegation congratulated 19 appointees to the new Alaska Salmon Research Task Force, the result of federal legislation passed last year.

The appointees, spread between federal and state, industry, subsistence, and academic subgroups, will be required to develop a coordinated research plan examining the challenges facing Alaska’s salmon within one year of convening.

An additional 29 names were announced to serve on a working group looking specifically at salmon declines on the Yukon and Kuskokwim rivers.

There are four government representatives on the task force, five people from the fishing industry, five from educational institutions, and five subsistence representatives, including Oscar Evon of Kwigillingok and Justin Leon of the Kuskokwim River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission.

Federal and State

Andrew Munro (North Pacific Fishery Management Council)
Ed Farley (NOAA Fisheries)
Bill Templin (State of Alaska)
Andy Piston (Pacific Salmon Commission)

Fishing Industry

Michelle Stratton (Alaska Marine Conservation Council/Commercial Salmon Fisherman)
Mike Flores (Charter Boat Fisherman)
Austin Estabrooks (At-Sea Processors Association)
Tom Carpenter (Commercial Fisherman)
Steve Reifenstuhl (Aquaculture Industry)

Oscar Evon (Native Village of Kwigillingok)
Jacob Ivanoff (Native Village of Unalakleet)
Karla Jensen (Native Village of Pedro Bay)
Caroline Brown (Alaska Department of Fish and Game Subsistence Director)
Justin Leon (Kuskokwim River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission)

Megan McPhee (University of Alaska Fairbanks)
Megan Williams (Ocean Conservancy/University of Alaska Fairbanks)
Tommy Sheridan (University of Alaska Fairbanks)
Noelle Yochum (Alaska Pacific University)
Katie Howard (Alaska Pacific University/Alaska Department of Fish and Game)

Appointees to the Yukon/Kuskokwim working group:

Brook Woods
Michelle Quillin
Vanessa von Biela
Scott Gende
Mark McNeley
Orville Huntington
Ragnar Alstrom
Adolph Lupie
Dorothy Shockley
Jennifer Hooper
Dan Gillikin
Pat Barry
Jessica Black
Martin Andrew
James Nicori
Renae Ivanoff
Charlie Lean
Virgil Umphenour
Bill Alstrom
Hannah Heimbuch
Stephanie Quinn-Davidson
Marvin Okitkun
Todd Sformo
Daniel Schindler
Curry Cunningham
Joe Spaeder
Andy Bassich
Serena Fitka
Courtney Weiss
Evan Erickson is a reporter at KYUK who has previously worked as a copy editor, audio engineer and freelance journalist.
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  • As the year ends, we look back and see that the crash in the salmon run had a huge impact on the Y-K Delta and and areas farther north. Last week, Alaska Sens. Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan introduced legislation to create the Alaska Salmon Research Task Force to better understand what caused salmon numbers to decline. All three of Alaska’s lawmakers signaled their intention to galvanize federal resources during a roundtable discussion earlier this year. Here is what they and some others said during that virtual meeting on salmon.