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Saturday, February 16, 2019
HomePolitics and PolicyTom Boutin named new head of AIDEA

Tom Boutin named new head of AIDEA

The Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority agency has a new chief executive director: Tom Boutin of Juneau.

Boutin spent more than 17 years in state government, but also had a career spanning 30 years in the private sector, much of it in timber and aviation. He was deputy commissioner of the Department of Revenue, and was the State Forester for Alaska from 1993 through 1997.

Tom Boutin

In the 1980s, he was the manager of Alaska’s public debt, issuing securities and working to preserve Alaska’s bond rating.

For 14 years, Boutin represented a manufacturer of firefighting aircraft throughout the United States and was a lobbyist in Juneau, representing several companies. He was the chief financial officer and president of a timber firm in Southeast Alaska.

Boutin has an MBA in finance from the University of Oregon, and a forestry resources undergraduate degree from the University of New Hampshire.

AIDEA was created by Alaska Legislature in 1967 to provide affordable financing for Alaskan businesses to expand the economy of the state and provide jobs for Alaska. Since its formation, it has paid over $392 million in dividends to the State’s General Fund from the millions of dollars in loans, and revenue bonds it has issued to advance industrial infrastructure and enterprise.

Boutin served on the AIDEA board for 13 years. He also once worked as a tree faller for Gildersleeve Logging and for Owens Drilling at Whale Pass, on Prince of Wales Island, where Gov. Michael Dunleavy first worked in Alaska.

Boutin was appointed by the Board of Directors to the position during a meeting this afternoon.

He replaces John Springsteen, who will be the Chief Operating Officer at AIDEA assigned to the Department of Commerce to bring AIDEA’s financing expertise to Gov. Dunleavy’s newly created economic development team.

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Suzanne Downing had careers in business and journalism before serving as the Director of Faith and Community-based Initiatives for Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and returning to Alaska to serve as speechwriter for Gov. Sean Parnell. Born on the Oregon coast, she moved to Alaska in 1969.

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  • Perhaps he can organize the move of the Alaska State Capital from Juneau to someplace closer to the rest of us.

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