Three Appointed to Alaska Board of Fisheries

Alan Cain, of Anchorage, Israel Payton, of Wasilla, and Robert Ruffner, of Soldotna, have been appointed to the Alaska Board of Fisheries, pending approval by the state’s legislature.

Alaska Gov. Bill Walker announced the appointments on Feb. 2.

Cain, a natural resources enforcement advisor and trainer, has 40 years of experience protecting fish and game resources as an Alaska wildlife trooper, criminal justice planner, and private contractor. Cain spent 15 years as an enforcement advisor to the Alaska Board of Fisheries. Cain would replace board member Robert Mumford of Anchorage, a former state wildlife trooper, who intends to resign from the board effective March 14, after the end of the board’s current meeting cycle.

Payton, who grew up fishing and hunting, living a subsistence lifestyle in the village of Skwentna, has worked as a hunting and fishing guide in Alaska for nearly 20 years. He serves on the Mat-Su Fish and Game Advisory committee and has been actively participating in fish and game board meetings. He would fill the seat currently held by fisheries board chairman Tom Kluberton, owner of a Talkeetna bed and breakfast, when Kluberton’s term ends on June 30.

Ruffner, an environmental scientist for the non-profit Kenai Watershed Forum, is the third appointee. He works with many stakeholders to promote the economic and ecological health of the region’s rivers and streams. He is also a member of the North Pacific Anadromous Fish Commission Advisory Panel. Ruffner would fill the seat held by Fritz Johnson, of Dillingham, regional fisheries director for the Bristol Bay Economic Development Corp. Johnson’s term also ends on June. 30.