What does Inuit-led environmental conservation mean to you?
Inuit-led environmental conservation to me means allowing the original stewards of the land to continue its prosperous management. Our ancestors managed this land on the principle of taking only what was needed. This allowed for continued, sustainable harvest into today’s time. We should not change this… We should not allow for corporate greed to decimate our pristine environment… We must keep our legacy as Alaska: The Last Frontier.
What are your educational and career goals? How do your goals relate to environmental conservation?
My educational goals and career goals align closely with each other. As an engineering student, I hope to improve our technology to be as sustainable and efficient as possible. Through my work in Bristol Bay, as a commercial fisherman, I’ve seen the detriment that inefficient technology reaps upon the environment; and I hope to change that. We have massive issues that will soon begin to affect our species populations. We must stop these issues before it does.
Please share a reflection of when have you have felt a connection to the ocean or the land.
I work as a Bristol Bay commercial fisherman. I have a strong connection to the seas, as it is not only my source of income, but also one of my most enjoyed activities in Alaska. This past season, I did much internal reflection on what I was participating in. As a commercial fisherman my work is to herd creatures swimming at all different times of day up a river in which I cannot see due to the sediment and silt in the water. I have a connection to the personality of the fish, and take great interest in the behavior of the fish.