Jim Young was confirmed by the Alaska DU officers and board members as the State Chairman Elect, and will officially take the reins as Alaska State Chairman in July 2013. Ben Soiseth, the current State Chairman, made the announcement to volunteers in attendance at Alaska DU’s annual meeting and awards banquet on March 17.
Jim is an avid waterfowler, a devoted family man, and a long time DU volunteer. He has served in a number of leadership positions, with his family always at his side. Please join us in welcoming and supporting Jim as he serves Ducks Unlimited in this important and challenging role. Please read the letter that Jim submitted after his selection, and join us in welcoming and supporting Jim and his family as he prepares to assume the responsibilities as the next Alaska State Chairman.
March 18, 2012
To all Alaska DU members and volunteers,
I first became involved with Ducks Unlimited in my home state of Iowa, attending my first banquet as a college student in 1985. Hearing so much growing up about these banquets, I eagerly volunteered to help work at the banquet and had a great time. I joined the Army after college and with work and life, didn’t have much opportunity to participate with Ducks Unlimited until my wife Sherri and I saw an advertisement on the door of a gas station in 1996 inviting all to attend the upcoming North Pole Ducks Unlimited Event. We attended the event and really enjoyed the atmosphere. Prior to leaving that evening, we filled out a volunteer card that was left on the dinner table.
In response to that card, we were contacted the following spring by the Area Chairman of the North Pole Committee, asking for our help with the next banquet. We jumped at the opportunity and for the next 8 years, Sherri and I, along with our 4 children, Andrew, Katie, Emma and Matt, became die hard volunteers for Ducks Unlimited! In 2005, we were asked by then District Chairman for Interior Alaska, Roger Penrod, to help with the Fairbanks Chapter Fall event. Our family was happy having the opportunity to work two banquets per year! Around this same time, Roger asked if I would be interested in being the Area Chairman for the North Pole Spring banquet. I accepted the challenge and really enjoyed the opportunity to help the ducks and the community.
In the summer of 2007, Roger accepted a new job and moved out of Fairbanks. Before leaving, he asked if I would could step up and take over as the District Chairman for the Interior of Alaska. Once again, with the help of my wife and family, I accepted the challenge. I have been the District Chairman for the Interior Alaska District (Fairbanks, North Pole, and Delta Junction) ever since. In 2008, I was honored to be recognized by Alaska DU as the District Chairman of the Year.
Today, I am humbled to be selected as Chairman Elect, and the opportunity to be your next State Chairman, effective in July, 2013. I look forward to contributing to DU’s mission to protect, conserve and restore waterfowl habitat. With the support of all the Alaska DU officers,volunteers, my family and the entire Alaska DU membership, I am eager to serve and learn more about Ducks Unlimited. I will do my best to continue the fine tradition of those who have served as State Chairman before me! It is a special honor to be chosen in this, DU’s 75th anniversary year.