Looking back on the days of the initial organizational meeting, it is remarkable to see just how far a small group of coastal Alaskan fishermen have come.
There have been many challenges and BSFA has been there to respond to them. But, BSFA has done more than respond, it has played a leading, if not the critical role, in ensuring that western Alaska fishermen are in control of their own future.
A Short list of successes in which BSFA played a substantial, if not the primary role, includes:
- Establishment of the Community Development Quota Programwith Harold Sparck that launched six CDQ corporations
- Negotiated for U.S. Coast Guard surveillance and enforcement to guard against foreign high seas piracy activity in the Bering Sea
- Development of herring fisheries in western Alaska
- Development of commercial halibut fisheries for western Alaska through the International Pacific Halibut Commission
- Elimination of high seas interception of western Alaskan salmon in the Bering Sea and North Pacific Ocean
- Launched various fisheries research and coordinating programs and non-profits including:
- Arctic-Yukon-Kuskokwim Sustainable Salmon Initiative
- Yukon River Drainage Fisheries Association
- Norton Sound Salmon Research and Restoration Program
- Bristol Bay Buy-back Coalition(dissolved after Department of Interior July 31, 1995 decision)
- Arctic-Yukon-Kuskokwim Tribal Consortium
- Establishment of the king salmon saving areas in the Bering Sea
- Creation of the Alaska Board of Fish Regional Advisory Committees
- Construction of the Quinhagak fish processing plant; as well as cold storage facilities in Tununak, Mekoryuk, and Toksook Bay.
All of these accomplishments are the result of tireless participation in the legislative and regulatory forums that have so much influence on western Alaska resources, including: the North Pacific Fisheries Management Council, the Alaska Board of Fisheries, the North Pacific Anadromous Fish Commission, the International Pacific Halibut Commission, the Yukon River Panel, and the other regulatory bodies as required.