Ravencall Spring/Summer 2023

Page 1



Say Hi to Our New Board Members

Land Acknowledgement

We acknowledge the Tlingit, Haida, and Tsimshian people who have been the stewards of the forests and waters of this land since time immemorial, and on whose land we each do our work and live our lives.

Gunalchéech, Háw’aa, Nt’oyaxsn, and thank you, The SEACC Team


To protect the special places of the world’s largest temperate rainforest, promote conservation, and advocate for sustainability in human use of natural resources. Inspired by the land, wildlife, cultures, and communities of Southeast Alaska, SEACC strives to ensure this interconnected whole exists for future generations.


Meredith Trainor Executive Director

Maggie Rabb Deputy Director

Maranda Hamme Tongass Forest Program Manager

Aaron Brakel Inside Passage Waters Program Manager

Matt Jackson Climate Program Manager

Heather Evoy ................. Climate Organizer

Katie Rooks..................... Environmental Policy Analyst

Lauren Cusimano .......... Communications Lead

Mel Izard ......................... Development and Outreach Associate

Raylynn Lawless ........... Office Manager

Board of Directors

Natalie Watson .................................... Co-Chair, Juneau

Judith Daxootsu Ramos ..................... Co-Chair, Juneau

Michelle Andulth Meyer .................... Co-Chair, Seattle

Steve Kallick Treasurer, Seattle

Steve Lewis Secretary, Tenakee Springs

Nevette Bowen Petersburg

Kathy Coghill Juneau

Kashudoha Wanda Loescher Culp Juneau

Cheryl Fecko Craig

Clay Frick Haines

Ray Sensmeier Yakutat

Wayne Weihing Ketchikan


Southeast Alaska Conservation Council 2207 Jordan Avenue, Juneau, Alaska 99801 907-586-6942 | info@seacc.org | seacc.org

Ravencall is a publication of SEACC

Editor: Lauren Cusimano

Proofreader: Mel Izard

Designer: James K Brown, Brown and Blue

Cover Photo: Bradle Morris


Remembering Larry Calvin


Where to Catch SEACC This Summer





Latest Threats to the


In This Issue...
| Spring/Summer 2023
Gear UP!
Our Climate Program Turns 1 In Memoriam: Rich Gordon Chilkat photo by Maranda Hamme photo by Colin Arisman photo courtesy of Lynn Wallen photo by Nellie Metcalf photo courtesy of Eric Calvin photo by John Hyde photo by Aaron Brakel The Roadless Rule is Back!
courtesy of Nevette Bowman Wear your love for the Tongass, Inside Passage, and SEACC on your sleeve! Head over to seacc.square.site to purchase SEACC T-shirts, bumper stickers, mugs, hats, and more.

Executive Director’s Note

now I’m certain

you know the great news — the National Roadless Rule is officially, fully, and finally restored to the Tongass National Forest! We did it!

I want to use this space to stop, celebrate, and reflect on the incredible path we traveled together over the last four-plus years. It’s shocking to think it’s been that long (and just during this most recent Roadless process — never mind the 22 years since the rule was created) and reflect on how we all worked together to get to where we are today.

Now, if you’re reading this while traveling through Southeast Alaska and are wondering what this Roadless Rule business is about, it’s a national rule that prevents new logging roads and additional logging on 9.3 million of the most intact acres of the 17 millionacre Tongass National Forest. The Trump administration — with some malfeasance from Governor Dunleavy — tried to take it away in 2020, and even succeeded for a minute. But Alaskans and Americans across the country rallied, protested, testified, and commented — and we got it back!

While reflecting on the journey this Roadless process has been for me, I found the first email — from August 30, 2018 — that notified me about how a process to create a new Roadless Rule “for the Tongass” had been printed in Ketchikan Daily News , the local paper of record. Though 2018 feels like a thousand years ago — one Trump administration and a global pandemic ago — I, at the time, had little comprehension of the sheer volume of work that lay ahead. Or of how dazzled and humbled I would be by the devotion and hard work of Southeast Alaskans and our allies who truly love the Tongass. Or how

many hours of travel, testifying, lobbying, disrupting, partnership, and advocacy were yet to come. We all made sacrifices during those years — time with friends and family, money, and a bit of sanity thanks to the redundancy of testifying on the same concerns over and over again, for years. Long flights and late nights at airports, or in the office. Missed time out fishing or hunting so we could sit in conference rooms under fluorescent lights, telling Forest Service staffers from outside Southeast Alaska how we did and did not want to see our forest managed.

Some of my favorite memories of that time are of staff: a communications person connecting with a Craig community member to see if we could send a bunch of information packets and stickers, then dashing to Seaplanes to get our materials into the hands of the first SEACC supporter on that flight we laid eyes on in order for our materials to be handed off on Prince of Wales in the nick of time for the “informational meeting” that night; the scrappy phone bank nights in our old office, with people scattered throughout every room and the happy hum of energy as volunteers called SEACC supporters, many of whom were delighted to be contacted, just waiting to engage. And the adrenaline we got from standing outside Elizabeth Peratrovich Hall handing out materials to entering supporters, many eagerly reaching for the info packets and beautiful stickers designed by friends of our partners at Sitka Conservation Society, which we all wore to signal our support for our home.

And, many months later, sitting in the subsistence hearing in Wrangell, texting with a supporter in town who was impatiently waiting for the temperature on her home pressure cooker full of venison to reach

the point where she could briefly leave home and provide her official comment at the hearing. (Only a few Southeast Alaska communities got proper subsistence hearings due to the way this process was set up, and every comment really counted.)

I was humbled to lead SEACC during this process and honored for us to do our work in the company of truly great leaders from Southeast Alaska’s Tribes and Tribal communities. My deep gratitude — Gunalchéesh, Hawa’a, and Nt’oyaxsn — to the leaders who spoke, testified, advocated, danced, and sang for the forest which they have called home for so many millennia. And for leading us all in defending Lingít Aaní.

I also want to thank all SEACC staff, each board member, and every partner, donor and funder who made a monumental effort and worked for this ultimate win.

That feeling of coming together — of us all leaning our shoulders to the task at once and feeling the boulder that was the Trump administration budge — was heady, powerful stuff. May we together create more of that in the years to come.

Of course, as you’ll hear from Tongass Forest Program Manager Maranda Hamme on Page 5, our work here is not — will never truly be — done, but it’s worth it, and so important, to take a moment to celebrate these big wins when we have them. And this was a big one.

My gratitude, Meredith

3 Ravencall | Spring/Summer 2023
photo by Lauren Cusimano Meredith Trainor

New Faces at SEACC

Please Welcome Six New Board Members

We’ve been celebrating many incredible additions to the SEACC Board of Directors. Please welcome Kashudoha Wanda Loescher Culp of Juneau (from Hoonah), Judith Daxootsu Ramos of Juneau (from Yakutat), Michelle Andulth Meyer of Seattle (from Yakutat), Cheryl Fecko of Craig, Nevette Bowen of Petersburg, and Kathy Coghill of Juneau.

Wanda, of the Chookeneidí Clan of Glacier Bay, is a wellknown advocate for conservation in Southeast Alaska. She got involved with conservation, as well as SEACC, in the 1980s when clearcut logging came to Hoonah. She began speaking up for her community and amplifying the voices of her elders. In 2016, Wanda became the Tongass Regional Coordinator for Women’s Earth and Climate Action Network International, an organization of women for climate, the environment, and socio-economic inequalities. She and WECAN Tongass have been advocating for the National Roadless Rule, food sovereignty, and more. Wanda was also a deckhand on a commercial fishing boat for 17 years.

Cheryl arrived on Prince of Wales Island (POW) in 1981 as a science teacher eager to explore the natural beauty of Southeast Alaska and share her love of the outdoors with students. During the heated Tongass issues of the 1980s and 1990s, Cheryl and other POW residents formed the Prince of Wales Conservation League to protect remaining old-growth stands from industrial logging. Now retired, Cheryl continues to engage in conservation by coordinating the Southeast Alaska Watershed Coalition and an annual

streamside ecology field day with schools, the Forest Service, and Alaska Department of Fish and Game. Cheryl has spent summers commercial fishing with her husband, taking selfguided river rafting trips throughout Alaska, and traveling.

Michelle, Tlingit of the Humpback Salmon people, Kwáashk’i Kwáan Clan, Fort House, from Yaakwdáat Kwáan, strives to fulfill her obligation to her Peoples’ lands because she recognizes their importance to the continuation of her Tlingit culture. In 2003, Michelle became involved with the Cruise Ship Taxation and Regulation initiative after seeing how Yakutat (and other coastal communities) were impacted. She managed the initiative until its passage by Alaska voters in 2006. She has been the Alaska State Director for the 2012 Obama-Biden campaign, a board member of Trustees for Alaska since 2011, and works as a Sacred Sites Specialist for Yakutat Tlingit Tribe.

Judith is Tlingit and is Raven moiety of the Kwáashk’i Kwáan Clan. She is the Program Coordinator of Haa Yoo X’atangi Deiyi: Our Language Pathways at the University of Alaska Southeast and was an Assistant Professor in the Department of Alaska Native Studies and Rural Development at the University of Alaska. She has a Bachelor’s in Anthropology, a Master’s in Teaching, and is a Ph.D. student in Indigenous Studies. Judy worked for Yakutat Tlingit Tribe as an anthropologist and Realty Director. She is also a co-curator for the Northwest Coast Hall renovation at the American Museum of Natural History in New York.

Nevette grew up salmon trolling around Kuiu Island, land of the Kéex’ Kwáan and Kooyu Kwáan, and now does commercial setnet fishing in Ahrnklin Estuary. In past, she worked with SEACC as part of a collaborative effort with the City of Yakutat, Yak-Tat Kwáan, and the Yakutat Fishermen’s Association to stem logging by the University of Alaska in Clan and setnet fishing areas. Nevette has also provided legislative staff support for banning fish farming and helped found the Alaska Marine Conservation Council. She resides part-time in Istanbul, where her husband reports for NPR, but returns seasonally to Yakutat to put up fish and hand troll with her 91-year-old father.

Kathy came to Alaska in 1981 as a Glacier Bay National Park summer intern living out of a 16-foot skiff. From there, she sought remote work conducting fishery research at Kadashan and Trap Bays for the Forest Service’s research branch. She’s lived without electricity or running water, appreciating the opportunity to reside where the sacred nature of the environment was not overwhelmed by human development. She received a Master’s in Aquatic Ecology in 1992 and later joined the board of Forest Service Employees for Environmental Ethics, where she started collaborating with SEACC to understand the implications of the latest Tongass Land Management Plan. Kathy is now a healthcare provider.

For the full biographies of our SEACC board members, visit seacc.org/about/seacc-board .

Lauren Cusimano is SEACC’s Communications Lead.
4 Ravencall | Spring/Summer 2023
background photo by Maranda Hamme Kathy Coghill (courtesy of) Judith Daxootsu Ramos photo by Konrad Frank Cheryl Fecko (courtesy of) Nevette Bowen (courtesy of) Michelle Andulth Meyer (courtesy of) Kashudoha Wanda Loescher Culp photo by Q’on Bear-Clark

The Roadless Rule is Back

But There’s More Work to Be Done

OnJanuary 25,

we celebrated the long-awaited announcement of fully restored 2001 Roadless Rule protections for more than 9 million acres of the Tongass National Forest. The United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) decision rolls back the Trump administration’s 2020 Alaskaspecific Roadless Rule and restores the longstanding National Roadless Rule as requested by Southeast Tribes, Alaskans, and SEACC supporters alike.

The final ruling reflects the Biden administration and USDA’s commitment and new approach to managing the Tongass National Forest guided by the Southeast Alaska Sustainability Strategy (SASS), which was announced in July of 2021. The strategy includes four primary components, one of which proposed the reinstatement of the 2001 Roadless Rule protections. The strategy also includes hard-won elements like engaging in meaningful consultation with Tribal Nations, ending largescale old-growth timber sales on the Tongass, and identifying investment opportunities to reflect our region’s diverse opportunities.

Clearly finalizing the Roadless Rule, along with the exciting plans outlined in the SASS, is a big win for the Tongass, our home. Now, following this exciting news, we can finally take a moment to reflect on the last four hard but hopeful years.

During the Roadless Rule process, SEACC, other conservation organizations, and Southeast Alaskans

banded together during multiple Roadless Rule public processes to showcase the diverse voices of our region. We expressed our strong desire for protections on the Tongass to first the Trump administration, and then the Biden administration.

In October 2020, when the Trump administration canceled the application of the nationwide Roadless Rule to 9 million acres of the Tongass, the public submitted nearly half a million comments during the federally required public process. The Forest Service analyzed a subset of the comments, finding 96% supported keeping the Roadless Rule on the Tongass, and only 1% supported the exemption ultimately selected by the Trump administration.

In the fall of 2021, SEACC and our partners again gathered detailed letters of support from folks in nearly every community of Southeast Alaska expressing their unique stake in the health and protection of the Tongass.

In total, more than 170,000 comments were submitted to the USDA Forest Service between November 2021 and January 2022 — a majority of which were in favor of restoring Roadless Rule protections.

Through comment period after comment period, petitions, rallies, and lobbying

Trainor and Deputy Director Maggie Rabb wearing their pro-Roadless stickers and handing out packets containing stickers, information, and a pre-addressed comment card at one of the Forest Service’s “information sessions” at Elizabeth Peratrovich Hall.

for the National Roadless Rule to stay in place on the Tongass, we can finally see this chapter close on a high note. This outcome would not have been successful without the leadership of Tribes, Southeast Alaskans, and our allies who spoke out in support of putting Roadless Rule protections back in place on the Tongass.

Gunalchéesh — thank you — for your part in advocating for the Tongass, the traditional homelands of the Tlingit, Haida, and Tsimshian peoples.

Maranda Hamme is SEACC’s Tongass Forest Program Manager.

Only some of our Southeast Alaska communities had subsistence hearings, and because of how the process was organized, speakers could only provide official comment at the subsistence hearings. Here is SEACC supporter Maria Byford

reading her pre-drafted testimony to a U.S. Forest Service

staffer to include in the record.

5 Ravencall | Spring/Summer 2023
photo by Lee House photo by Meredith Trainor Executive Director Meredith photo by Michael Penn, Juneau Empire The June Summer Solstice bonfire out at Eagle Beach in 2019. photo by Q’on Bear-Clark The SEACC team and Southeast Alaskans visited Washington, D.C. in April 2019 to advocate for keeping the Roadless Rule on the Tongass. SEACC archive photo

SEACC’s Climate Program Turns 1

The SEACC Board of Directors voted in spring 2022 to elevate SEACC’s climate work, advancing what had been a part-time organizer role within our Tongass Forest Program to its own thing — the SEACC Climate Program. This is the third fully supported program at SEACC along with the Tongass Forest Program and the Inside Passage Waters Program.

In short, our climate work has grown exponentially over the last year. We’re working as hard to address climate change in Southeast as we are to protect the Tongass and the waters of the Inside Passage.

And we’re excited to update you on it! Here’s a Q&A with Matt Jackson, now our Climate Program Manager.

Q: How did you go about creating a new program at SEACC?

A:SEACC has actually been doing climate work since day one. The single best thing anyone in Southeast could do for climate change is to advocate to keep forests standing and storing carbon. So one of my first questions was, how do I do work that is additive and complementary to our legacy forest work?

Q: And how DO you do that?

A:I think most SEACC supporters intuitively understand that protecting the Tongass is climate action. During the 60-day comment period for the Roadless Rule in winter of 2021 to 2022, our public comment tool offered four options as to why someone would support the Roadless Rule. And 60% of all action-takers chose climate — making it by far the most popular option.

But I knew from my experience as a part-time climate organizer that when SEACC sent out an alert on something that dealt with emissions — like writing a letter to Sen. Lisa Murkowski to support the Inflation Reduction Act or something — we would only have a few dozen responses.

So my first goal has been to get more folks in Southeast to feel excited about tackling emissions head-on. Because we could save every tree in the Tongass, but if we don’t stop global emissions, then all life on earth is in danger. But we also can’t be doom and gloom about it — we have to balance honesty about the risks with some optimism and actionable changes.

Q: It’s difficult to talk about climate change without feeling hopeless, but so much has been written about how hopelessness is not productive when it comes to climate.

A:When I started at SEACC in 2020, about 400 people in SEACC’s community of 8,000 subscribers had taken some kind of explicitly climate-focused action with us (not counting protecting the Tongass as climate action). One of my big goals for the first few years was getting that number up so that it would be comparable to the thousands of people who take action with us on forest or clean water issues.

So I write a monthly climate newsletter (seacc.org/climate-newsletter) that balances optimism with the very real danger, and always provides some kind of action. Like, yes, we should be very stressed about climate change, but my background is actually in mental health, not energy or conservation, and I know from that field that stress can be healthy and productive IF we have a constructive outlet for it. So I always make sure I have an outlet. If anyone is feeling stressed about climate change, you can go to seacc.org/climate and there will be a small thing for you to do about climate change waiting for you. Through those kinds of methods, we’ve been able to triple the number of people taking some kind of action on climate change through SEACC in the last year.

6 Ravencall | Spring/Summer 2023
photo courtesy of Alaska Climate Alliance
photo courtesy of Alaska Climate Alliance photo by Colin Arisman SEACC Climate Organizer Matt Jackson with Jodi Mitchell, Chief Executive Officer of the Inside Passage Electric Cooperative. Alaska Representative Rebecca Himschoot and Paulette Moreno, member of the Alaska Climate Alliance’s Indigenous Navigation Council, with SEACC Climate Organizer Matt Jackson.

Q: If every person reading this Ravencall took some kind of action, it wouldn’t add up to the scale of the climate crisis, right?

A:Well, I’d push back on that, because we are both blessed and cursed with very pivotal members of Congress. And like we say over and over, the best climate solution in Southeast is the Tongass, and we have an outsized voice on that. But the bigger answer is that we make sure our climate work is scaffolded within bigger state and national frameworks, and also that we scaffold between those bigger frameworks and our community grassroots groups.

Q: Tripling is impressive, but, SEACC is ultimately a regional organization. If every person reading this Ravencall took some kind of action, it wouldn’t add up to the scale of the climate crisis, right?

A:Well, I’d push back on that, because we are both blessed and cursed with very pivotal members of Congress. And like we say over and over, the best climate solution in Southeast is the Tongass, and we have an outsized voice on that. But the bigger answer is that we make sure our climate work is scaffolded within bigger state and national frameworks, and also that we scaffold between those bigger frameworks and our community grassroots groups. SEACC works closely with our friends at the National Wildlife Federation to shape and organize around federal policies.

We’ve also played a foundational role in forming the Alaska Climate Alliance (ACA), which includes about a dozen core organizations that work on climate together, and many dozens of individual activists and peripheral groups. The ACA has been incredibly successful so far: in January we organized a fly-in of activists from across Alaska to lobby in Juneau and we had more than 80 meetings with 43 different legislators. So we’re ensuring Southeast is a part of these bigger conversations.

Q: Where is SEACC’s climate work going next?

A:We need to continue building our base of climate supporters across Southeast. And we are going to take two of our policy priorities — the Renewable Energy Fund (REF) and the Green Bank — across the finish line this legislative session. After that, we’re looking at taking on bigger and bigger challenges. The REF and Green Bank are the lowest-hanging fruit, but we need to build off of them for bigger climate justice wins. And of course, it’s all related to our other program work, like protecting the Tongass and advocating for clean water and responsible mining.

But any way you cut it, climate is going to be the issue of the century. So it’s safe to say SEACC will be working on it for a long time to come.

Matt Jackson is SEACC’s Climate Program Manager.

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photo courtesy of Alaska Climate Alliance

In Memoriam:

Conservationist and SEACC Founding Member Rich Gordon

Southeast Alaska lost

a beloved conservationist when Richard J. Gordon, a legendary environmentalist and SEACC founding member, passed away at the age of 90 last October.

Rich was a fixture of the community as, during his many decades in Juneau, Rich was often spotted on trails with binoculars, Xtratufs, and his characteristic two hats — one for warmth, one to keep out rain and sun. “He always found a spot in the forest where he could lean against his knapsack and watch the leaves and flowers grow,” recounts lifelong friend R.T. “Skip” Wallen, a conservationist, artist, and also a SEACC co-founder.

Skip and Rich were at the first-ever meeting of the Southeast Alaska Conservation Coordinating Committee in 1970. One year later, that committee became SEACC.

“He viewed SEACC as his family,” shared Lynn Wallen, another lifelong friend and Skip’s wife. And SEACC considered Rich family, too. While he didn’t accept any high-profile roles within the organization, Rich volunteered his time and expertise, and donated to SEACC throughout his life.

“He was involved with SEACC since the day it was thought of,” says Greg Streveler, another friend and former SEACC board member. “He was always part of the conversation and was always a go-to guy for data.”

Rich graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 1964 with a degree in biology but spent his college summers in Alaska doing research. Rich would become an advocate for the lands, waters, and wildlife he saw. Rich’s greatest passion was birding, and the constantly threatened Mendenhall

Wetlands were a favorite spot. Rich and wildlife photographer and author Bob Armstrong (aka “Nature Bob”) submitted an application for the wetlands to be recognized as a globally significant Important Bird Area with the National Audubon Society. According to Bob, Rich’s extensive bird observations over the years were vital in making the application successful. But Rich’s devotion to Southeast went further than the wetlands. According to the Wallens and Greg, Rich adored countless special places in Juneau and all over Alaska.

Rich kept an eye on the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) and would quickly speak up about logging, including sales on Admiralty Island. The biggest concern at the time, the late 1960s, was a contract proposed by USFS to create a pulp mill supplied mostly with Admiralty timber. The USFS was taken to court on this contract.

“Rich was in the middle of all of this,” says KJ Metcalf, current board president of Friends of Admiralty Island and a former board member of SEACC. “The idea was to prove that people did use the island and ... were harmed by the timber sale.” Rich was one of the key witnesses during the resultant legal battle. Thanks to him and others, it became clear the planned clearcuts would devastate the island. This was all around the same time as the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (ANILCA) of 1980 — which created most of Alaska’s conserved lands — was being designed. Thanks to Tribal leaders, powerful advocacy by Angoon Elders, Kootznoowoo Inc., Rich, and other environmentalists, Admiralty Island was included in ANILCA and is federally protected to this day.

Rich was an expert on many areas proposed for protected status under ANILCA and was involved in selecting those lands for proposal. He often testified before Congress in Washington, D.C. on ANILCA matters and on other areas proposed for protection. “They couldn’t trip him up,” Lynn says. “His knowledge was deep.”

Rich’s effect on Alaska is undeniable, but he was also an inspiration to those who knew him.

“[He was] probably the most devoted person to conservation I’ve met in my life,” says Greg Streveler. “One of the best naturalists I’ve ever known.” Bob agrees. “He influenced me to do a lot of sitting, observing, and wondering, and that’s been my major purpose in life,” he says. “Rich helped quite a bit in getting me stimulated in that direction.”

Rich was also a fan of baseball — the game, cards, and statistics — as well as classical music, reading, and traveling. He tried to walk at least 5 miles a day and took extensive notes on his observations — many of which are being entered as museum records. Rich wanted to be in nature and devoted a remarkable amount of time, energy, and focus to protecting every natural place he could — a legacy he ensured would be long-lasting. Not only did he dedicate a large part of his estate to SEACC, he also established the R.J. Gordon & R.T. Wallen Endowment Fund for SEACC along with Skip and Lynn (see page 11, “Plan for the Long Term”). Rich’s generosity and commitment will help protect Southeast Alaska’s lands and waters for years to come.

Join us in celebrating Rich’s life and legacy by viewing a compilation of stories about Rich assembled by the Juneau Audubon Society at bit.ly/rich-c-gordon, or send your own reminiscences to mel@seacc.org

Mel Izard is SEACC’s Development & Outreach Associate.

8 Ravencall | Spring/Summer 2023
photos courtesy of Lynn Wallen

Remembering Sitkan and Tongass Advocate Larry Calvin

In December 2022, the Tongass lost a man who did much to protect Southeast Alaska through his love of his home, his impact on Sitka, and sharing all that with his children, friends, and the next generation of Sitkans.

Larry Calvin moved to Sitka with his family in 1941 at the suggestion of his uncle, Jack Calvin, who played a critical role in creating the West Chichagof Yakobi Wilderness Area. Jack had the connections with national environmentalists necessary to build the momentum to get the bill into and passed in Congress. He was also one of the founding members of the Southeast Alaska Conservation Coordinating Committee — later, SEACC.

At 7, Larry struggled in school because of his inability to memorize, a story he loved to tell. At the end of his first year in Sitka, he failed second grade because he couldn’t remember the alphabet. “And it’s been the same all my life!” was how he always finished this story with a laugh. However, he excelled as an entrepreneur, a talent that manifested early. Before reaching his teens, he and a friend started a tradition that is still observed in Sitka — selling hot dogs and soda during Fourth of July

celebrations. His love of this place also manifested at an early age thanks to fishing and hunting trips with Willis Osbakken, a lifelong friend and hunting partner.

Larry was a fisherman, diver, and businessman among other accomplishments. One story he enjoyed telling was about his diving business. He bought some old diving gear and taught himself to dive. Among the variety of jobs he did, many involved untangling nets on the props of seiners. His diving also was instrumental in ensuring there was adequate rock in the construction of the Sitka airport.

He constantly worked on construction projects. After becoming frustrated at not easily obtaining lumber, Larry began ordering it directly from suppliers down south. Eventually, he and his wife Maryann took some savings to negotiate and persuade funders down south to finance their purchase of the Pyramid Packing Company site, which he restored using Alaskan resourcefulness. Because of his and Maryann’s honesty, friendliness, and clear business sense, funders realized they were worth taking a risk on, and he was seen as a reliable source for other Sitkans. For years, he paid for his inventory after it was sold while also paying off his debt. The wharf, Baranof Building Supplies, served Sitka’s fishing fleet with storage space

as well as construction.

Eventually, they sold the business to Spenard Builders Supply and rented that space to Murray Pacific (now to LFS Marine Supplies).

Throughout his life, Larry contributed greatly to a healthy town, to the fishing fleet, to widening awareness of keeping the Tongass wild when taking friends on his boat, and to supervising activities to keep popular recreation spots usable — like Goddard Hot Springs. Sharing his passion for the Tongass while respecting it and the life it supported was an important part of his many adventures with his family. His children all trolled with him, hunted with him, and took many trips into the West Chichagof Wilderness Area. He showed the next generation of Alaskans what really matters.

Larry loved nothing better than helping others and sharing the fruits of his success, like his prolific blueberries and huckleberries, or helping friends with projects. He was a passionate, generous man who acted on what he believed needed to be done, spoke out and supported efforts to protect the Tongass, and was a great storyteller with a good sense of humor.

We miss his energy, his humor, and many stories, and continue to reap benefits from his actions.

9 Ravencall | Spring/Summer 2023
Marian Allen is a former SEACC board member who was assisted in this writing by Eric Calvin. photo by Simon Hurry photo courtesy of Eric Calvin photo courtesy of Eric Calvin

The Chilkat Watershed— Threatened

by International Mining Corporations

Jilkáat Aani K a Héeni

in the Lingít language—the Chilkat Watershed serves as an important ecological, geographical, and cultural link between the coastal temperate rainforest of Southeast Alaska and the dry, subarctic tundra and taiga of the Yukon Territory—and the tiny sliver of British Columbia wedged in between the two.

Much drier than the Tongass rainforest, the Chilkat region experiences colder winters and hotter summers than are typical of Southeast Alaska. But the Chilkat climate is a long way from the extremes typical of the Yukon. The happy medium that moderates the two climates makes the watershed quite hospitable to a diversity of plant and animal species— the highest diversity of vascular plants in Alaska, and the highest diversity of mammals in Southeast, with 38 mammal species, according to the Southeast Alaska Conservation Assessment.

Overlapping ecosystems and vast areas of healthy, connected habitat make for resilient wildlife populations. The Chilkat Valley’s northsouth positioning and the braided web of the abundant, transboundary Chilkat River system contribute to its importance as a migratory corridor for fish and wildlife.

The Chilkat Watershed is just as important as a cultural linkage. Jilkáat

Aaní—the territory of the Jilkáat Kwaan (Chilkat Tlingit)—extends well into Canada, and the ChampagneAishihik First Nations north of the border cite strong relationships with their Tlingit neighbors to the south spanning generations, according to the First Nations of the Yukon.

According to the Chilkat Indian Village of Klukwan, their ancestral land base extends over 2.6 million acres, much of which has been encroached upon by mining claims, homestead laws, the Statehood Act, and the U.S.-Canada border. The famous map the Chilkat leader, Kohklux, and his wives drew for the U.S. Coast surveyor George Davidson in 1869 charted a complex geography of Chilkat trade routes extending around 500 miles, all the way to Fort Selkirk on the Yukon River. Many of those trails are still in use today. The Chilkat Watershed provided wealth in the form of salmon, eulachon oil, and other natural offerings since time immemorial, and continues to support its inhabitants—both Indigenous and settlers—in this way today.

The Chilkat and Chilkoot rivers are popular fishing and camping destinations for Yukon residents when the salmon and eulachon are running— or any time the weather is nice.

According to U.S. Department of Transportation statistics, 2022 saw over 40,000 border crossings from Canada into the United States at the Dalton Cache-Pleasant Camp Border Station on the Haines Highway. Haines

“... the highest diversity of vascular plants in Alaska, and the highest diversity of mammals in Southeast, with 38 mammal species, according to the Southeast Alaska Conservation Assessment.”

and Klukwan enjoy the economic boost sparked by Canadian long weekends and the social influx.

With the strongest salmon runs in Southeast Alaska, the world’s largest seasonal concentration of bald eagles, one of the largest brown (coastal grizzly) bear populations that coexist with human settlement, and communities on both sides of the border that love and depend on the life it supports, the Chilkat Watershed is worth cherishing and protecting.

Sadly, the Canadian mining company, American Pacific Mining (which bought out Constantine last year), and its partner, Japanese smelter company, DOWA, are aggressively trying to develop a dangerous sulfide mine at the Chilkat’s headwaters, just upstream of salmon spawning grounds.

Southeast Alaska Conservation Council maintains a strong commitment to protecting the Chilkat Watershed, its clean water, abundance, and communities. You can find up-to-date action items to protect the Chilkat at our Chilkat Action Page at seacc.org/protect-chilkat

10 Ravencall | Spring/Summer 2023
Shannon Donahue is SEACC’s former Upper Lynn Canal Organizer. photo by Connor Gallagher by Shannon Donahue photo by John Hyde

Support SEACC’s Work Today

Join Us

A healthy Southeast Alaska is a healthy future. Donate $35 or more to SEACC today to keep old-growth standing and Alaskan waters clean.

See seacc.org/donate

Sustain Us

Small monthly donations add up to make a big difference at small nonprofits like SEACC!

Sign up for recurring monthly, quarterly, or annual donations for any amount at seacc.org/donate.

Plan for the Long Term

You can plan to leave legacy or longterm gifts directly with SEACC’s Action Fund, a critical and accessible reserve fund that our board can spend directly on immediate needs.

Reach out to SEACC Deputy Director Maggie Rabb at maggie@seacc.org or visit seacc.org/legacy

You can also make a donation to the R.J. Gordon & R.T. Wallen Fund for SEACC at the Juneau Community Foundation. This fund generates annual revenue that helps fund our work each year. Visit bit.ly/gordon-wallen-fund

Other Ways to Give

Reach out to SEACC Deputy Director Maggie Rabb to learn about Stock Donations, IFQs, and other ways to give to SEACC at maggie@seacc.org.

See What ... or Where ... SEACC’s up to in 2023!

It’s been a minute since SEACC last included an events calendar in an issue of Ravencall, but we’re thrilled that we have the opportunity to do so in this edition. Here is where you can find the SEACC team in Southeast Alaska this summer:

May 6

May 18

May 18-21

June 15

Juneau Maritime Festival

Peratrovich Plaza, Juneau

SEACC May Community Potluck and Bonfire

Sandy Beach, Juneau

Little Norway Festival

Downtown Petersburg

SEACC June Community Potluck and Bonfire

Skater’s Cabin, Juneau

June 15

SEACC Sitka Community Potluck and Bonfire

Location TBA

July 20


July 27-30

August 4-6


SEACC July Community Potluck and Bonfire

Auke Rec, Juneau

Climate Fair For a Cool Planet

Overstreet Park, Juneau

Southeast Alaska State Fair

Southeast Alaska State Fairgrounds, Haines

Blueberry Arts Festival

Downtown Ketchikan

Coffman Cove “By The Sea”

Arts and Seafood Festival

Coffman Cove, POW


August 17

SEACC POW Community Potluck

Coffman Cove, POW

August Community Bonfire

Location TBA, Juneau

We plan to visit additional communities and attend more events throughout Southeast. As more dates and locations get confirmed, we’ll update our website and social media with more details on the events we will be hosting and attending.

For up-to-date information, please visit seacc.org/events.

P.S. Want to see us at or invite us to a new or long-standing event in your town? Let us know! You can send a message with event info to info@seacc.org

Thank You, Business Partners!

Glacier Bay Sea Kayaks | Gustavus Spirit Walker Expeditions | Gustavus Above & Beyond Alaska | Juneau Silverbow Inn | Juneau Alaska Wild Salmon Co. | Juneau Baranof Wilderness Lodge | Sitka 11 Ravencall | Spring/Summer 2023
☞ ✍ ✉ ✵

In addition to submitting comments

through SEACC’s action portals, giving public testimony, signing petitions, and helping us spread the word about conservation issues critical to Southeast, making a donation to SEACC takes your impact to the next level.

Your donation allows our team to watchdog mines, stand up to industrial logging, grow our region’s climate movement, and do the important grassroots mobilization that helps advocate for Southeast.

And whether it’s $1 one time or $100 every year, each donation contributes to our work. Together, we can continue to preserve the incredible places and communities that make up Southeast Alaska.

Donate online at seacc.org/donate, or clip off the back of this Ravencall and mail it with your donation to the address listed. Thank you for your support!

YES! o I want to set up a monthly, recurring donation of: o $5/month o $10/month o $25/month o $50/month o $100/month o $_____/month o I want to make a one-time donation of: o $35 o $50 o $100 o $250 o $500 o $________ o I want to learn more about becoming a Legacy Donor. Please send me more information. Donate online at seacc.org/donate or clip this form and send to: Southeast Alaska Conservation Council 2207 Jordan Ave, Juneau, AK 99801 Your contribution is tax deductible to the extent allowable by law. Card # Expiration Date CVV # Name Phone Address City State Zip Email ✁ I want to support SEACC
NON-PROFIT ORG. US POSTAGE PAID JUNEAU, AK 99801 PERMIT #107 Check out our website and follow us on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook to connect with the SEACC community and keep up to date on the issues!
photo by Maranda Hamme
Juneau, Alaska 99801
photo by Aaron
Brackel 2207 Jordan Avenue
(907) 586-6942
photo by Aaron Brakel

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