After hearing about threads about Alaska FNAWS and the recent Board of Game sheep drawing permit hunts, I decided to weigh in on this forum. (Thanks to David Johnson for providing this great tool for Alaskans.)
In July of 2006, there was a hostile takeover of Alaska FNAWS. Six of us with over 50 years of combined service on the Alaska FNAWS board were told by a few newly appointed board members that we had done a poor job and were not helping the sheep or sheep hunters of Alaska. We six "old" board members" resigned from the board to let the new board go their "new direction" to improve Alaska FNAWS.
"Hostile takeover" is the best description I can come up with for this change. Three of the new board members have had little but negative comments about us old board members, and continue to do so. In my experience as a life member, (past) magazine editor, and board member for 9 years I have not seen anything like this. This negative approach cannot help FNAWS, sheep, or us sheep hunters. The new board alienated many of us by their caustic manner and I can't see how they are going to be effective anytime soon.
Four of us past board members are life members of Alaska FNAWS. I plan to remain a member for life, but I don't plan to be active currently because I disagree with most of what the current board is doing and planning. I have not had any contact with the other five old board members since the summer of 2006, but they all were criticized more by the new board members than I was.
Personally, I am now on the Mat-Su Fish & Game Advisory Committee and have been attending the Board of Game meetings. I am also on the Mat-Valley Blue Ribbon Sportsman's Committee, which works on outdoor issues concerning the Valley. I think I am being much more effective (on sheep issues -- or any outdoor issues for that matter) with these activities than I have ever been with Alaska FNAWS.
I encourage all hunters and sheep enthusiasts to attend Board of Game meetings whenever you can, send in written comments, and sign up for oral testimony on any proposals or issues you feel strongly about. Often, it only takes a handful of individuals who give oral testimony at these meetings to sway the vote of the Board of Game. And their votes are what determine our game regulations.
If anyone wants my input on how to work within Alaska Board of Game proposal/public input process, I will gladly help. I don't visit this Forum often because of time constraints, but I always try to answer personal emails promptly. tony@TonyRuss.com