Monthly Membership Meetings
Membership meetings are held on the third Tuesday of each month from 5:00PM to 6:00PM Alaska Standard Time, Call in 866-556-2149 CODE: 8169747#

Friends of Alaska National Wildlife Refuges -

Friends of Alaska National Wildlife Refuges
Monthly Membership

Tuesday, October 21, 2014 
5:00:-6:00 PM Alaska Standard Time
Call in 866-556-2149 CODE: 8169747#
Celebrate Wilderness and National Wildlife Refuge Week by following the explorations of refuge visitors to Arctic National Wildlife Refuge on their Facebook page.

Organization Contacts 

David Raskin
Henri Callewaert  
Do you have fundraising ideas, or would you like to suggest a presenter for the monthly membership meeting, send your ideas to the Vice-President. 
Mary Frische
Jason Sodergren
Did you work on a volunteer assignment for Friends, and need to get reimbursed? Contact our Treasurer.  Jason also manages the Friends website. 
Bekah Jones
Ginny Harris
Would you like to inspire others to get involved on Alaska Refuges, join our membership committee. 
Betty Siegel
Are you volunteering for a Friends project on a National Wildlife Refuge, or would you like to? Contact our volunteer coordinator. 
Outreach/Education Fundraising 
Chuck Illif
Special Projects
Sharon Baur
Do you have an idea you would like to purse that pertains to our mission that is not listed above? Talk to our Special Projects Chair. 


Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Introductions & Discussion

New Members: Where do you live?  Why did you join Friends? 

Board Decisions & Discussion

  • Krisanne Rice has stepped down from her board position as Friend Vice President 
  • Henri Callewaert long-time member and recent retiree has stepped up to fill the newly vacated position. 
  • Always looking for interested members to get involved in the Board.  Board meetings are the second Tuesday of the month.  Contact any of the board members for more information. 
  • Friends raised some funds to print this year's Migratory Bird Calendar, a yearly art contest conducted on Refuges to encourage rural students to learn about migratory birds. the 2015 free Calendars should be available in December. 
  • The Advocacy committee is looking for help with a variety of issues including: Transportation issues in the Bering Sea and Northern Gulf;  25 mile buffer zone from the mainland  in Beaufort Sea, Izembek issues, etc. Contact David Raskin form more information. 
  • For the upcoming year, Friends will coordinate only 7 Membership Meetings will be held in the following months: October, November, January, February, March, April and September.  This change reflects the difficulty in coordinating meetings during busy holiday summer field season. As well as the idea with fewer meeting we can plan more interactive presentations from members and refuge staff. 

Guest Refuge Staff

Meet Matt Connor from Kenai Refuge

Matt Connor is the new Supervisory Visitor Services Manager for the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge.  Matt's previous position was at the Prairie Learning Center in Fergus Falls, Minnesota. Matt joins the Kenai staff at an exciting time- a new Kenai visitor center is slated to open this winter, and they are on the eve of their 75th anniversary. Matt is excited to be in Alaska and get to know the Friends groups in the Region. 

Download Presentation (.pptx)

Friends Happenings

Special Thanks to Out Going Vice-President Krisanne Rice

Krisanne Rice has concluded her tenure as Vice President of the Friends of Alaska National Wildlife Refuge. She has been a dedicated member and contributor for the last four years. Krisanne has been especially helpful in her coordination of the monthly membership calls by coordinating engaging speakers and refuge managers.  Krisanne has headed up fundraising efforts for the last two years.

Celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the Wilderness Act 
The Voices of the Wilderness exhibit will be making its last stop on it's Alaska tour at the Anchorage Museum on November 21, 2014- February 8, 2015.  The exhibit is currently is located in Kenai if you happen to be on the Peninsula. 

This exhibit was envisioned by the public lands agencies and their partners as an innovative public outreach tool to connect Alaskans and their visitors to the many values of wilderness in Alaska. The lands being celebrated are critical to local economies, recreation, tourism, subsistence, cultural meaning, clean air, wildlife habitat, and much more. Voices of the Wilderness is intended to highlight these values and help connect Alaskans to their unique public estate. 

Another Successful Season on Alaska Refuges
Volunteer Report 
For the 2014 Field Season Friends of Alaska National National Wildlife Refuges assisted on wildlife and habitat projects as well as education and outreach on six refuges.

Friends helped plan, set up and carry out the the celebration of the 50th Anniversary of Wilderness Act in Homer.  Friends helped out with education projects on Yukon Flats and Alaska Peninsula. Friends pitched in to help with Invasive weeds once again on the Kanuti. Friends also assisted on wildlife surveys and habitat protect on Izembek and Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge. 

Mary Frische and Tom Collopy continue to add to the striking photo library of Alaska Refuges by documenting the scenes and wildlife at Kenai National Wildlife Refuge.   Chuck and Blanche Iliff  helped staff the Coldfoot Visitor Center worked for 2 weeks at the Arctic Interagency Visitor Center in Coldfoot for Kanuti.  

Special Thanks this year's volunteers 
Chuck and Blanche Iliff 
Sharon & Marvin Baur 
 Ken and Donna Hinkle, 
Tom Collopy and Mary Frische
Henri Callewaert
Tom Balland
Jen McDonough
David and Marga Raskin 
Betty Siegel 
Vera Stein
Betty and Rich Coons

If your name is missing please report your hours and project to Volunteer Coordination Betty Siegel.


News from the Refuge System

Continuing Resolution Runs ThroughDecember 11

Congress has not passed a fiscal year 2015 appropriation bill yet, but last month it did pass a continuing resolution to fund the federal government through December 11. On September 17, the House approved the $1.012 trillion continuing resolution (H J Res 124) with broad support, 319-108. The next day, the Senate approved the same resolution, 78-22. President Obama signed the resolution into law on September 19.

Service Readies Monarch Butterfly Conservation Campaign  

Service Director Dan Ashe has asked regional and Headquarters leadership to develop a monarch butterfly conservation strategy, and he has asked Refuge System Division of Natural Resources and Conservation Planning program specialist Donita Cotter to coordinate the strategy nationally.  

North American monarch butterfly populations have been in decline for a decade. In response, at the 2014 North American Leaders Summit in February President Obama, President Peña Nieto of Mexico, and Prime Minister Harper of Canada reached an agreement to establish a working group to ensure the conservation of the monarch butterfly.  In June, President Obama signed a Presidential Memorandum titled “Creating a Federal Strategy to Promote the Health of Honey Bees and Other Pollinators.” The memo outlines an expedited agenda to address the devastating declines in honeybees and native pollinators, including the monarch butterfly.
The monarch conservation strategy will address habitat restoration and enhancement, education and outreach, and monitoring and research needs. As part of that effort, Director Ashe has directed Service leadership to “use the monarch butterfly as a flagship species, as we continue our surrogate species approach.”

2015 Refuge System Award Nominations Are Due November 17

The National Wildlife Refuge Association is accepting nomination for its 2015 National Wildlife Refuge System Awards, which honor outstanding accomplishments by refuge managers, refuge employees, volunteers and Friends groups. Nominations are due by November 17. Results will be announced in March 2015. Award recipients will receive a commemorative plaque and a monetary award: $1,000 for refuge manager, employee and volunteer awards; $2,000 for Friends group. Candidates who were nominated in past years but did not receive an award are eligible for nomination this year. For more information or to download and print the required 2015 nomination forms, go to or contact Debbie Harwood (202-417-3803 ext 16,


Mailing address: Friends of Alaska National Wildlife Refuges , 2440 East Tudor Road , PMB 283 , Anchorage , AK, 99507-1185, USA