Denali Disposal doesn’t compete with the Municipality’s Solid Waste Services. It’s owned by political and civic activist Bernadette Wilson, who was the co-chair of the Bronson for Mayor campaign.
Wilson’s father, Dan Zipay, who was the founder of Alaska Waste, has just been named the director of the Muni Solid Waste Services. Until recently, he was a 12.5 percent shareholder in Denali Disposal, where he was a silent partner.
But you wouldn’t know it from reading the Anchorage Daily News, which says Wilson was the “campaign manager,” rather than co-chair of the mayor’s campaign.
There is a big difference: A manager is typically a paid position and that person works 8-15 hours a day during the campaign, while the other is volunteer and advisory in nature.
The Anchorage Daily News, sniffing out a scandal, throws shade on Zipay, on the bandwagon to bounce him during the confirmation process. Already, Assemblyman Chris Constant is telling the ADN he is going to “get to the bottom” of this.
The newspaper went to some lengths to go on the attack. Its original headline was markedly different than the one it posted the next day.
Between the first headline and the attack headline, Pulitzer Prize winning writer Kyle Hopkins, who has a penchant for biased reporting, gave it his own spin as he posted it on Twitter:
The time stamps tell the story of a newsroom on a mission to destroy. The first story showed up Aug. 17, and six hours later the Kyle Hopkins’ spin was on Twitter. Just a few hours later the newspaper changed the headlines to attack Zipay and Wilson, using Hopkins’ talking points.
Wilson and Craig Campbell, who is now Bronson’s chief of staff, were the campaign co-chairs.
Brice Wilbanks was the Bronson for Mayor campaign manager, and he is now the mayor’s deputy chief of staff, working for Campbell. Wilson took no job in the Bronson Administration, and in fact stepped back from the Bronson campaign in February to focus on her business.
On July 30, Denali Disposal shareholders voted that Zipay would relinquish his 12.5 percent share in Denali Disposal.
Importantly, Denali Disposal receives no contracts from the municipality, does not compete with the municipality for work, but is simply a private disposal company operating in Anchorage.
Alaska Public Media didn’t make the “mistake” that Hopkins, reporter Emily Goodykoontz, and the copy desk at the ADN made.
APM wrote: “Zipay is a part-owner of Denali Disposal, a private trash collection company, which is run by Bernadette Wilson. Wilson is Zipay’s daughter and was also Bronson’s campaign chair.”
The state records that show Zipay as a 12.5 percent owner of Denali Disposal do not reflect the update, which occurred more than three weeks ago, Wilson said.