ABOUT ME

Hi, I'm Helen

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WHERE I COME FROM

I grew up moving every few years because my Parents worked for the State Department. My journalist husband Tim and I met and married in Juneau 26 years ago. Tim covered Alaska's fishing industry and I worked for the Alaska State Museum. We have teen-age twins, Aurora and Brandt. The four of us survived Tim's major stroke in 2011. At the time he worked for the Associated Press covering mining and I was running a laboratory  and museum consulting business. Our family is stronger and closer because of Tim's stroke. We now face the COVID threat, kids leaving for college and technical training, and empty nest syndrome. Our recent life has had the logistical complexity of a major military campaign.

A THRIVING CAREER

I'm an art conservator. I spent three years studying at the Institute of Archaeology, University of London, specializing in the preservation and deterioration (materials science) of objects, buildings and textiles. The career took me to wonderful places including a Roman fort site in Bulgaria, an ancient Greek Sicilian city excavation, working with the Lakota Sioux in the Dakotas, assessing all of the outdoor monuments in Alaska, responding to disasters from fires, floods, high winds and heavy snow loads, and working on the cultural patrimony of Alaska. I am one of the top lecturers and trainers in museum preservation in the world. The most fun was being the Director of the Haines Sheldon Museum and helping to raise its standards of exhibits and collections care.

Museums are part of the richness of a community. I am proud of bringing over $500,000 in grants to our community. I am proud that I brought jobs to Haines and introduced Haines to 7 museum studies graduate students, a few of whom chose to stay.  I am proud that I started the Totem Trot fundraiser, an event that brought people to Haines, celebrated our history, and raised $4,000 to $8,000 annually. I am proud that I made the museum a fun and exciting place for the children of Haines, who averaged 3 visits per year. I am proud that I was able to hire two SAIL clients and gave meaningful volunteer work to 8 other elderly and disabled members of the Haines community. I will continue to advocate for the children, elderly and disabled of Haines and for the cultural richness of our valley as a member of the Assembly.

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Change for a Better Haines

Responsible Fiscal Management:

  • Spend CARES Act funding on people in need rather than on a morgue.

  • Manage budget cuts in a manner that retains borough jobs, especially during this time of economic crisis.

  • Develop a long-term solution for our school bond debt.

  • Investigate alternatives to lower the cost of borough healthcare while retaining the medical coverage staff need.

Economic Development

  •  Create economic diversity and expansion through supporting entrepreneurs and established businesses.

  • Solicit established manufacturing businesses from outside Haines with the lure of our natural beauty, excellent school system, Covid isolation, and rich culture.

  • Relieve the economic pressures on families by supporting better paying jobs.

  • Improve the infrastructure and build capacity to sustain our community through additional grant-writing to fund large capital projects.

Quality of Life

  • Create a community that attracts families and businesses by maintaining quality of life assets such as our pool, theater, trails, waterfront, library and museum.

  • Maintain the infrastructure that puts us at the crossroads of sea and land.

  • Enforce open Meetings of all borough boards, committees and the assembly, with improved accessibility that allows everyone a voice and access. Take community input at the committee and board level prior to issues being moved to the Assembly.

  • Improve disability access throughout Haines.

  • Support state-wide candidates who will fight for our ferries.

START CHANGE

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Helen Alten

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© 2020 by Helen Alten.

P.O. Box 691
Haines, AK 99827


helenalten99827@gmail.com

907-314-2073