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Meet the Board


Sharon Barr
Molly Brown
Blake Chupka
Susan Cox
Darrel Gardner
Bill Gordon
Bill Granger
Morgan Griffin
Gene Gustafson
Hanna Sebold
Rob Stone
Adam Trombley
David Wilkinson


Name: Sharon Barr
Position:
Attorney Member
Board member since: 2016
City: Anchorage
Alaska resident since: 1990
Law School: Northeastern University School of Law
Firm or Agency:
Alaska Public Defender Agency

I originally came to Anchorage for a 3-month internship in February 1989 at the Office of Public Advocacy.  I was having so much fun that I stayed an extra 3 months. I returned in September of 1990 to clerk for Judge Robert Coats on the court of appeals and have been here ever since. I’ve worked at the Office of Public Advocacy and the Public Defender Agency.  I am married and have two sons and a somewhat troublesome dog. I like to hike, run, cross-country ski, read, and will watch virtually any movie that is shown at the Bear Tooth.

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Name: Blake Chupka
Position: Attorney Member
Board member since: 2012
City: Ketchikan, AK
Alaska resident since: 2003
Firm or Agency: Chupka Currall LLC
Law School: University of Michigan Law School

5 things you don't know about me…

  • I moved to Alaska mainly because I enjoy fishing  
  • I joined my family in buying a cabin in Minnesota a few years ago to spend less time working and more time fishing
  • I’m recently happily married
  • I’m unofficially on a quest to visit every major league baseball ballpark
  • My favorite movie is McCabe & Mrs. Miller

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Name: Susan Cox
Position: President
Board member since: 2014
City: Juneau, AK
Law School:
UC Davis School of Law
Firm or Agency:
Attorney General's Office
 

  • Most people are surprised to learn I'm Canadian. My family emigrated to the U.S. when I was almost 6. I became a naturalized American citizen when I was in college.
  • I love to travel. My first adventure outside North America was to Turkey as an exchange student for a summer when I was 18. My most recent trip abroad was to Turkey a year ago with my family. 
  • Like so many others, I initially came to Alaska for just a year. I clerked for then-Superior Court Judge Bud Carpeneti after law school; after the clerkship I went back to California for a job, but returned 9 months later, for good. 
  • I like to garden and have fairly good luck growing tomatoes year-round in my office. I also enjoy almost all kinds of music, singing, cooking, entertaining, boating, and spending time at our cabin in Tenakee Springs. 
  • I'm the worst skier in my family. My husband Tom Nave and our children Julia and Peter have all been ski racers and are excellent skiers. Now Julia competes in extreme/free ride events and Peter is a professional ski guide, in Japan and Haines, Alaska.

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Name: Darrel Gardner
Position: Attorney Member
Board member since: 2014
City: Anchorage, AK
Alaska resident since: Lifelong Alaskan
Firm or Agency: Federal Defender Agency
Law School: University of California, Hastings College of the Law

 

  • My aunt and uncle, Minnie and Frank Swanda, were part of the original Palmer Colonization Project in 1935. The present day Mat-Su Borough Administration Building is named after my cousin Dorothy. Minnie’s youngest brother, my father, followed his sister to Alaska in 1949.  
  • I went to Airport Heights Elementary, Wendler, and East. To this day I live in the (highly remodeled) house that I grew up in. Three of the neighbor kids from my youth still live within a block. When I see one of them, Richard, out walking his dog, I have to fight the urge not to call him by his childhood nickname, “Dickey.”
  • My wife is originally from Houston Texas; her uncle was the famous oil well firefighter Red Adair, who was loosely portrayed by John Wayne in the 1968 movie “Hellfighters.”  Her uncle did not actually look like John Wayne. Not even close.
  • I like German Shepherd Dogs, hoppy pilsners, and BMW motorcycles. Coincidentally, I am part German.
  • In law school I wanted to be a trial lawyer. I didn’t know that a “civil litigator” wasn’t the same thing until I started working for a business law firm once I got my JD.  Ten years later and almost ready to quit the law, I took a two-week job filling in at the Office of Public Advocacy’s criminal section. A few months later the section supervisor asked me back to second chair a first-degree murder case. That was my first criminal trial.  I have been a criminal defense lawyer ever since. In those 20-plus years, I have never had a misdemeanor go to trial.

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Name: Bill Gordon
Position: Public Member
Board member since: 2012
City: Salcha, AK
Alaska resident since: Lifelong Alaskan
Firm or Agency: Retired
Education: University of North Carolina

  • Lived first three years as a toddler in Pt. Hope, AK.

  • Lived in Anchorage 4 years serving as a teacher at Chugiak High.

  • Lived in Juneau 4 years working as an aide to Governor Jay Hammond.

  • Lived in Fairbanks where I have owned several businesses, most recently investor-owned public utilities.

  • Currently reside on Harding Lake in Salcha, AK.

  • Graduated from University of North Carolina and remain an avid UNC basketball fan (Duke Law School graduates who applied for judgeships during my term on the Alaska Judicial Council will remember tough examinations!).

  • Married to Bonnie. We have three children.

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Name: Bill Granger
Position: Treasurer (Public Member)
Board member: 2001-2009 / 2011-Present
City: Anchorage, AK
Alaska resident since: 1964
Firm or Agency: Wells Fargo
Education: Gonzaga University (Undergraduate), University of Washington (Graduate Pacific Coast Banking School), Notre Dame University (Graduate Catholic Charity Management, Mendoza College of Business)

  • I have been a pilot most of my life, flying a J-3 while attending Romig junior high school, and today owning a Cessna 185 and a Super Cub. Hunting/fishing and spending time at my cabin consumes most of my non-working time. My wife and I love to travel. Last year we visited Egypt, Israel, and Turkey.

  • I have always had a fascination with the law. In high school while working at Matanuska Valley Bank I would spend my spare time in the law library, studying cases and writing briefs, finding this to be fun and very interesting, but I was the only guy who wore a white shirt and tie to school every day also. Maybe by today’s standards I would be considered a nerd. The middle of my junior year at Dimond High School I was accepted into Gonzaga University. After attending Gonzaga I returned to Alaska and my work in banking. If my love of banking had not been stronger I surely would have attended law school.

  • Married 31 years (Diane Otto), three children; Suzie, Andrew, and Christopher.

  • Employed by Wells Fargo Bank N.A. Senior Vice President. Every bank I have worked for has been acquired by Wells Fargo. 40 years banking in Alaska. Currently supervise the Credit Management Groups in Alaska, Washington and Oregon.

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Name: Morgan Griffin
Position: New Lawyer Liaison
Board member since: 2016
City: Juneau, AK
Firm or Agency: Alaska Court System
Law School: Gonzaga University School of Law

Although I’m originally from Idaho, my parents moved our family to Alaska when I was five.  My dad fell in love with the state when he fought fires here as a smokejumper in the 70’s.  I spent my first three years as an Alaskan in the Yupik village of St. Michael.  Subsequently we moved to Juneau, and I have called it my home ever since, even though I did go on a 15-year hiatus to almost everywhere west of the Mississippi you could imagine.  I have also lived in Istanbul, Turkey, Singapore, and in La Spezia, Italy for a week.  I was a Korean translator in the US Navy, but I’ve never been to Korea.  I am highly motivated by food.  I love cooking and entertaining and my travel plans are made with food as the main focus.  From the moment I have my morning coffee I am thinking about what I’m going to have for dinner.  I like to hike, fish, bargain shop, and throw the Chuckit! at the beach with my dog, Andre the Giant Schnauzer.  When I was around the age of nine, I placed first in the Double Ugly Derby off the docks at Auke Bay  using my favorite form of bait, hot dogs.

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Name: Gene Gustafson
Position: Attorney Member
Board member since: 2011
City: Fairbanks, AK
Alaska resident since: 1997
Firm or Agency: Attorney General’s Office
Law School: University of Idaho College of Law

My passions and places you might find me throughout the year:

  • Over the years, even before moving to Alaska in 1997, I developed a passion for fly fishing for salmon in Alaska’s rivers and streams. So when the fish are running you will hopefully find me fly fishing in my favorite salmon stream, which I much prefer to shoveling snow in Fairbanks.

  • As the statewide director of competition BBQ judging, I have joined the hunt for the elusive morsel of smoked BBQ perfection. So every year in late July you will find me at Pioneer Park in Fairbanks directing the judging of the Alaska State BBQ championship. The state champion has the honor of representing the State of Alaska at the three biggest BBQ competitions in the world, Memphis in May, the Kansas City Royal, and the Jack Daniels in Lynchburg, Tennessee (the holy grail of BBQ competitions).

  • By virtue of my BBQ judging, I have also developed my own passion for BBQ. So on the 4th of July you will find me in my back yard surrounded by friends and hardwood fired smokers filled with brisket, pork shoulder, ribs and chicken thighs, accompanied by a nice big glass of ice tea. You might also find me hovering around a smoker in the winter, as long as the temperature is above -20.

  • Since junior high I have enjoyed woodworking with hand tools. So whenever I’m not fishing or cooking/judging BBQ, you’re apt to find me either reading about woodworking, or in the shop working on a project or admiring and caring for my tools.

  • As an offshoot of my interest in woodworking, I also enjoy building and remodeling projects. So when I find the time you might find me either building a shed, a greenhouse, or a deck, or maybe even remodeling a kitchen or a bathroom.

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Name: Adam Trombley
Position: Public Member
Board member since: 2012
City: Anchorage, AK
Alaska resident since: 1979
Firm or Agency: Champion Technologies
Education: Lewis-Clark State College

Adam Trombley, a lifelong Alaskan, resides in East Anchorage with his wife Stephanie and daughter Tatum. Adam is a graduate of East High and has his BA from Lewis and Clark State College in Idaho. Currently, Adam works in the Oil and Gas Industry. Prior to his current career, he ran a small construction business with his brother. Prior to being elected to the Anchorage Assembly, Adam served two years on the City’s Budget Advisory Commission, serving as Chair for one year. In his first year in office he was a member of the Budget and Finance Committee and Audit Committee. Currently, Adam is Chair of the Ethics and Elections Committee, a member of the Budget and Finance Committee and the Audit Committee. Adam has also spent time coaching basketball at Lumen Christi and Dimond High Schools. When not working or involved with the Assembly, Adam, Stephanie and Tatum enjoy the Alaskan outdoors fishing, hiking, running, four-wheeling and biking.

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Name: David Wilkinson
Position: Attorney Member
Board member since: 2014
City: Fairbanks, AK
Alaska resident since: Lifelong Alaskan
Firm or Agency: Attorney General's Office
Law School: Seattle University School of Law

  • I am married to Kyla Wilkinson, a born-and-raised Fairbanksan.
  • Our first child was born in February 2014. Watching him grow and learn has been the most incredible experience of my life.
  • I have a degree in environmental chemistry from UAF. I once spent a summer at a research lab measuring pollutants in fish.
  • I clerked for Justice Daniel Winfree.
  • I love Alaska grown and harvested foods. Some of my favorite activities are berry picking, fishing, tending my little flock of chickens, and baking bread.

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