FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 14, 2017
Alaska Wild Salmon Celebrated in the Nation’s Capital
Senators Murkowski and Sullivan introduce a resolution establishing September as “Alaska Wild Salmon Month;” honored with “Fish First” awards at reception
WASHINGTON, DC – Alaska Wild Salmon was on the menu and on the Congressional agenda this week in Washington, DC. Earlier in the week, Alaska Senators Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan introduced a resolution marking September as Alaska Wild Salmon month, which could be considered by the Senate this week. These two Senators, along with Alaska Congressman Don Young and the Walker-Mallott Administration, were honored with “Fish First” awards from Bristol Bay Native Corporation (BBNC) during a Celebration of Alaska Wild Salmon in the nation’s capital. Alaska Lieutenant Governor Byron Mallott accepted the award on behalf of the Walker-Mallott Administration. The celebration featured wild salmon flown in from Bristol Bay. On Tuesday, BBNC Board Member Peter Andrew, Jr. testified at the Senate Commerce Committee about the value of salmon to Bristol Bay’s culture, ecology, and most importantly, economy.
“Alaskans understand and appreciate the central role wild salmon play in our lives, and this week we hope the rest of the country begins to understand the tremendous value of these fish,” said BBNC CEO Jason Metrokin. “We thank our delegation and Lieutenant Governor Mallott for their leadership and support for wild salmon, and tireless efforts to share salmon’s value with both their colleagues and the American public. After a tremendous salmon run in 2017, a celebration is certainly in order for the fish that we always put first.”
The resolution recognizes the contribution Alaska wild salmon make to the U.S. and Alaska economy, noting that they support 38,000 jobs and $2 billion in annual income across the U.S. In addition to establishing September as Alaska Wild Salmon month, the resolution “encourages individuals, corporations, and other relevant organizations to help celebrate the sustainable Alaska Wild Salmon industry and the health and social benefits it provides to our nation.”
Yesterday evening, BBNC joined sportsmen, commercial fishermen, conservationists, and others in a Celebration of Alaska Wild Salmon. Guests were served wild salmon flown in from Alaska, and remarks from the Alaska delegation as they are presented with “Fish First” awards from BBNC. The celebration was inspired by the success of the second annual Alaska Wild Salmon Day, held statewide every August 10th.
On Tuesday, BBNC Board Member Peter Andrew, Jr. testified before the Senate Commerce Committee’s Subcommittee on Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries, and Coast Guard regarding the importance of the Bristol Bay fishery. The subcommittee is led by Senator Sullivan. The hearing discussed the reauthorization of the Magnuson-Stevens Act that governs marine fisheries management in U.S. waters.
“The people of Bristol Bay know we live in one of the most incredible places on earth that, if well-managed, can sustain us for thousands more years into the future. Ted Stevens knew this, as did Warren Magnuson. I am glad that four decades later, we still have an Alaska senator and a Washington senator on this committee championing the values inherent in the Magnuson Stevens Act that allows our Bristol Bay salmon fishery to be so successful.”