Contact: Keely Hopkins, Pacific States Assistant Manager
The Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF) Pacific States Assistant Manager Keely Hopkins joined the newly appointed Co-Chairs of the Alaska Legislative Outdoor Heritage Caucus and members of the Advisory Council on February 26 for a kick-off luncheon to celebrate the new leadership team and to discuss the upcoming year. The Co-Chairs and Advisory Council members were all in Anchorage to attend the annual SCI banquet, the largest gathering of sportsmen and women in the state, which provided the perfect opportunity for the meeting.
Serving as Co-Chairs for the Legislative Outdoor Heritage Caucus are: Senator David Wilson (R), Senator Bill Wielechowski (D), Representative Kelli Merrick (R), and Representative Mike Cronk. “We have an incredible new leadership team in Alaska, with Co-Chairs representing both chambers and parties and bringing a great depth of experience and perspective on the issues facing wildlife management and conservation in Alaska”, stated Keely Hopkins. “I’m looking forward to working with the Co-Chairs to advance hunting, fishing, trapping and recreational shooting on behalf of all Alaskans”.
Working hand in hand with the Caucus Co-Chairs, the Advisory Council for the Legislative Outdoor Heritage Caucus consists of Chair Jennifer Yuhas (Outdoor Heritage Foundation of Alaska), Kevin Kehoe (Alaska Wild Sheep Foundation), Paul Jenkins (Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation), John Sturgeon (SCI- Alaska), Mike Seawright (SCI-Alaska), Ted Spraker (SCI-Kenai), and Mike Crawford (SCI-Kenai). Jennifer Yuhas offered that she is thrilled to be working with such a great group of people committed to a collective effort to ensure our outdoor heritage in Alaska. She said “We have a diverse caucus assembled now who are willing to put the resources and our heritage first and do the work. CSF has been a great resource over the years. I am happy to see some of the same state legislators involved who started the National Assembly of Sportsmen’s Caucuses as a resource for our Alaska members and facilitate those connections.”
Also attending the SCI banquet were Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus members Senator Lisa Murkowski, Congressman Don Young, and Alaska Fish and Game Director of Wildlife Conservation Eddie Grasser, a longtime friend of CSF. The Caucus will be meeting again in Juneau at the end of March.
Studies conducted at both the state and federal level have found that the number of hunters and trappers have been on a generally declining trend over the past several decades. To increase recruitment, retention, and reactivation (R3) of hunters and trappers, which initiative do you think would have the greatest impact?