Fairbanks, AK, October 14, 2013 -- Independent candidate for governor, Bill Walker, announced today his running mate and candidate for Lt. Governor, Craig L. Fleener of Fort Yukon, Alaska. Fleener is a lifelong Alaskan, military veteran and former Deputy Commissioner of the Alaska Department of Fish & Game. He is Gwich’in Athabascan and is a descendent of the Doyon Limited region. Each candidate will gather 3,017 signatures and appear on the November 2014, ballot.
EXPERIENCE: as the Deputy Commissioner of the Department of Fish & Game, Mr. Fleener provided policy and administrative guidance on wildlife and subsistence management, and worked closely with the divisions of Wildlife Conservation, Subsistence, and Habitat on policy, regulatory, management and funding issues. He also served on the Alaska Board of Game, and also as the Director for the Division of Subsistence.
Prior to joining the Department of Fish & Game, Mr. Fleener served in several capacities for the Council of Athabascan Tribal Governments (“CATG”) in Fort Yukon, including service as Executive Director of that organization. While at CATG, Mr. Fleener served for a number of years as the only U.S. representative on the Gwich’in Council International, a permanent observer organization of the Arctic Council, an international body made up of eight arctic nations which identified problems and created solutions for pollution, international shipping, natural resource development, human dimensions issues and indigenous peoples’ concerns for the arctic region on a global level.
MILITARY: In 1986, Mr. Fleener joined the military and served in the United States Marine Corps. He is currently a Major in the US Air Force Alaska Air National Guard, where he has served since 1991, and is a senior intelligence officer and recently served a tour of duty in Afghanistan as part of ongoing US operations in the region. He volunteers as a board member for HAVE Alaska (Helping American Veterans Experience Alaska) providing psychological and physical rehabilitation for wounded veterans.
EDUCATION: Mr. Fleener received his Bachelor of Science degree in Natural Resources Management from the University of Alaska – Fairbanks in 1999, and in 2013 graduated with Honors from American Public University with a Master of Arts in Intelligence Studies. He completed substantial work on a Masters of Science in Resources & Environment from the University of Calgary in Alberta, Canada in 2001, but was unable to complete the degree because of military activations.
"I am in this race to help bring all Alaskan voices together," Craig Fleener stated. "I am working to unite Alaskans and my ultimate goal is to bring us together to solve the problems that we face in order to build a stronger Alaska."
Bill Walker stated, "Craig Fleener brings to this Alaska ticket a depth and wealth of experience in fish and game management, military and veterans' affairs, circum-Arctic policy experience and his proud Alaska Native heritage."