• On behalf of Transportation Security Administration employees throughout Alaska, I want to express our gratitude for the tremendous outpouring of community support provided to TSA and all federal employees during the partial government shutdown. Across the state, individuals, businesses and local communities joined forces to provide food and gift cards. These countless gestures lifted our spirits and impacted us all. Your gracious donations and kind words of encouragement arrived at exactly the right time.
During the five-week shutdown, TSA Alaska employees ensured nearly 250,000 travelers were screened and arrived safely to their destinations. We cannot overstate the importance of aviation to our great land. With our unique geography, we rely on air transportation and the airport is a social hub. High school athletic teams do not drive to events, they fly. If a medical procedure is required in our rural communities, a flight is often required and food and supplies arrive via air. Aviation is a lifeline in Alaska and we are committed to protecting and securing it.
No shutdown will diminish this resolve. In fact, the commitment of the entire TSA Alaska workforce was unwavering and on full display. I could not be more proud and inspired as TSA employees consistently performed their duties selflessly and professionally despite not being paid and faced with much uncertainty.
This was an unprecedented event for all government agencies. The generosity received from so many across the state bolstered our workforce as they carried out their critical national security mission. On behalf of all TSA employees stationed throughout Alaska, please accept my heartfelt and sincere gratitude for your overwhelming support. It’s an honor and privilege to live and serve in the Last Frontier.
Peter S. Duffy,
Federal Security Director (Acting) for Alaska
Transportation Security Administration
• On behalf of everyone at the Southeast Alaska Food Bank, I would like to thank all the groups, businesses and individuals who have so selflessly stepped up to help us meet the increased demand for our services created by the recent government shutdown.
Since this shutdown occurred, we’ve opened up three separate times for federal employees, contractors, and their families, and have distributed food to more than 120 families.
We’d like to thank Aldersgate United Methodist Church, the Juneau Jewish Community and another congregation who wishes to remain anonymous for their financial support as well. These funds will be used to replenish our food inventory and restock our shelves.
We’d like to thank everyone who has stopped by to drop off food donations because of this shutdown relief effort, as well as everyone who has chosen to donate funds to make sure that we have enough food to go around.
We’d like to thank SeaShare for donating more than 10,000 pounds of bycatch fish to us to help meet the increased demand we’ve experienced recently.
We’d like to thank Robert Luna, Stephanie Decker, Quy Nguyen, Mahire A’giza, Ray Reichl, Matt Schofield, Stephanie Garren, Roberto Puente, and Steven Earles from the United States Coast Guard Chief Petty Officers Association; Jay Menze, Chris Pedamo, Matt Kish, Rick Nieves, Tim Barr, Edward Csech and Bruce Larsen from the USCG Chief Warrant Officers Association; Annice Hand from the USCG Enlisted Association; and Eric Adam from the U.S. Forest Service for volunteering at the food bank during these three distribution periods and helping keep our shelves stocked.
We’d also like to thank Chloie and Dennis Watson, Eric Adam, George Carpenter, Tami Brown, Ciara Kish, Dave and Nadine Lefebvre, and BJ Kanouse for volunteering to assist us during these distribution periods as well.
We’d like to thank everyone at the Juneau Empire, KTOO and the Juneau Radio Center for helping spread the word about the services we’re offering to the federal furloughed employees.
We are a proud member of the United Way of Southeast Alaska.
It’s only because of the generosity of the people of Southeast Alaska that we can continue to work towards our goal of providing healthy and nutritious food to those members of our community who may need help providing food for themselves and their families.
Thank you again. Together, we can end hunger.
Manager, Southeast Alaska Food Bank
• I want to publicly thank the Douglas harbormaster and Good Samaritan who braved the bitter cold to secure my sailboat after it broke loose at the stern over the weekend in Mike Pusich Douglas Harbor. As often as I’ve been to the harbor to clear the snow off the decks, etc., the call that my boat had broken loose (but had been secured) came as a surprise. Being new to sailing, I’ve still got a lot to learn, so I truly appreciated how expertly the boat was tied off and the effort that went into the gesture — particularly considering the freezing cold winds. Thank you very much for coming to my assistance.
Lynda Giguere (aka Gigilligan),
• To our Alaska communities: We want to take this opportunity to share our heartfelt appreciation for all of the extraordinary support shown to our federal family of employees during the partial government shutdown and beyond. We are humbled and honored by the outpouring of support from neighbors, businesses, nonprofits, schools, spousal clubs, associations and many others. Whether you provided a helping hand, resources or just someone to talk to, it was appreciated by all. The last five weeks have been trying and stressful for our employees and their families, but with the amazing support we received our employees persevered and were prepared to quickly return to work when the shutdown ended. Thank you for helping federal employees stay ready, relevant and responsive.
Dr. James Balsiger, regional administrator, NOAA Fisheries
Dr. Robert Foy, director, NOAA’s Alaska Fisheries Science Center
Rear Admiral Matthew T. Bell, Jr., commander, 17th Coast Guard District
Dave Schmid, regional forester, USDA Forest Service, Juneau