Alaska business leaders named to new Arctic Economic Council
July 20th, 2014 | Carey Restino
Three Alaskans have been chosen to participate in the first meeting of a council aimed at encouraging economic stability and growth as well as environmental protection and social development in the Arctic.
Lori Davey, general manager of Fairweather LLC, a member of the Edison Chouest Offshore companies, Bruce Harland, vice president business development for Crowley Marine Services, Inc., and Gail Shubert, president and CEO of Bering Straits Native Corporation have all agreed to be founding members of the Arctic Economic Council, a council associated with the Alaska State Chamber of Commerce and the Alaska Arctic Policy Commission.
NANA Corporation Vice President of Community and Regional Affairs Chuck Greene agreed to participate as an alternate.
The group was formed at the request of the minister of the Arctic Council, Leona Aglukkaq, who recommended that the chamber and the state council work collaboratively.
"I am excited about the possibilities for the new Arctic Economic Council," said Senator Lesil McGuire (R-Anchorage), commission co-chair. "The formation of this new group, a product of our Canadian neighbors' Arctic Council chairmanship, represents a dynamic new opportunity for the business community to forward their expert perspectives, promoting responsible economic development, on to the Arctic Council. Equally important, these arctic industry experts will now have an opportunity to respond to and advise other Arctic Council initiatives with respect to their impacts and effects on economic development and the people's of the circumpolar arctic."
Representative Bob Herron (D-Bethel), commission co-chair said, "The Arctic Economic Council brings together experts with a wealth of experience from understanding business opportunities to on-the-ground operations in the Arctic. The Council has indicated a willingness to work collaboratively with the many different local, state, national and international players building investment and trade in the circumpolar arctic."
"With the guidance of the AEC, the Commission hopes to see the Alaskan Arctic emerge as a region that supports thriving communicates that have the capacity to respond and adapt to an emerging Arctic. Alaska presents many new and exciting economic opportunities, that when balanced with maintaining healthy environments and traditional cultures will promote a resilient and dynamic Northern region," added Herron.
The Alaska Arctic Policy Commission, which includes 26 legislators and experts from around the state, is currently developing recommendations for the state's Arctic policy. Its next meeting will be Aug. 26 in Nome and Aug. 27 in Kotzebue.