Follow the money to see why this man is target of Democrats in Mat-Su’s school board election


One of the more interesting races in the Matanuska-Susitna Borough’s Nov. 7 election is a school board race, where a Democrat-backed candidate has reported raising more than $38,000 to take out Republican Ole Larson, the conservative incumbent.

Dianne Shibe’s report at the Alaska Public Offices Commission’s website shows that most of her $38,000-plus is coming from the efforts of teachers union types and Outside the district. What is clear in the filings is that Larson has become a target of the Democrats, as shown by the fact that former Democrat U.S. Senate candidate Pat Chesbro is a deputy treasurer for Shibe, and Anchorage School Board President Margo Bellamy is a financial contributor.

Ole Larson has been a conservative voice in what is arguably the most conservative school district in the state. But he has raised just $9,472.49 from campaign supporters — a third of what Shibe has to spend to reach potential voters.

In the District 3 school board seat, conservative incumbent Kathy McCollum has raised $9,472, while her liberal teacher-union-supported challenger Sydney Zuyus has reported raising $4,970.

Here are the seats up for election, with early voting starting Oct. 23:

SCHOOL BOARD DISTRICT 3 Three Year Term Ending November 2026 (Vote for One)
MCCOLLUM, Kathy, incumbent
ZUYUS, Sydney
ASSEMBLY DISTRICT 4 Three Year Term Ending November 2026 (Vote for One)
YUNDT, Rob, incumbent, unopposed
ASSEMBLY DISTRICT 5 Three Year Term Ending November 2026 (Vote for One)
TEW, Clayton E. “Mokie,” incumbent
ASSEMBLY DISTRICT 6 One Year Term Ending November 2024 (Vote for One)
ABNEY, Jackson L.
COMAN, Kerby J.A.
FONOV, Dmitri, incumbent
GLASHAN, Stafford
SCHOOL BOARD DISTRICT 6 Three Year Term Ending November 2026 (Vote for One)
SHIBE, Dianne K.

Proposition 1 is also on the ballot. It would authorize the Matanuska-Susitna Borough to build transportation systems projects listed and issue bonds in the amount of $38,168,210, which is 50% of the cost of the projects.

The question is:

Shall the Matanuska-Susitna Borough engage in the construction, additions, improvements, betterments, repair, reconstruction, and acquisition of public roads and pathways, and facilities related thereto, in the Matanuska-Susitna Borough of the following Projects, together with all necessary equipment and transportation facilities, including improving school access, and the acquisition of lands or rights in lands in connection therewith, and issue its areawide general obligation bonds, in an amount not to exceed the sum of Thirty-Eight Million One Hundred Sixty-Eight Thousand Two Hundred and Ten Dollars ($38,168,210) for the purpose of financing the cost, in part, of the following Projects in accordance with and ratifying and approving the provisions of Ordinance Serial No. 23-077?


  1. The real question is: when will
    Conservatives stop complaining about outside money and start doing the same?

    Right or wrong, this is the game. Learn it’s rules and play it better if you want to win.

    • Surrender to radical leftist tactics of “win at any cost” only drags everyone down to their dirty level, TMA.

      No, the solution is to NOT give in to their vile tactics, and to share in those tactics, but to FIGHT for what we all know is right and fair. Doing anything else both cedes the (supposed) moral high ground to the statists, and guarantees failure, as NOBODY does fraud, deceit, dishonesty, corruption and manipulation like radical leftists.

      • During the Boer War, the Boers consistently mined train tracks. When the Brits started putting Boer POWs in cars at the front of the trains, the Boers quit the
        tactic, so did the Brits.

        Consider the NFL. When someone innovates, they dominate until other teams adopt the same tactics and get better at it.

        Consider the school bully. He takes the quiet kids lunch money, shoves the kid in the hall, all that stuff. Right up until the quiet kid has enough, learns to box, and beats the hell out of said bully.

        Taking the high road at the expense of common sense often provides a great view of your own defeat.

  2. I personally overheard a Teamster “shop steward” at Durham School Services telling a small group of people to vote for Schibe. Paraphrasing here; “Just vote for Schibe, your life will be better, don’t worry about the political stuff…..” That’s exactly the kind of stuff I would expect from a union shill.

  3. At least none of these seats have hyphenated surname candidates.

    NEVER vote for anyone with a hyphenated surname! It is a virtually assured giveaway of that person being a radical leftist extremist.

    And for anyone who thinks that that is a trite and shallow comment, please provide me with one example that proves me wrong. Just one!

    • Colleen Sullivan-Leonard? I honestly don’t remember much about her political career, but I can’t imagine her being a flaming leftist when she comes from that family.

      • I am not familiar with that person, Sean. And you may well be correct in your assessment of her. But even if so, that would simply be the exception that proves my observed rule that hyphenated surnames are strongly associated with pretension and arrogance, and both of those traits are strongly associated with being a radical leftist.

        • Colleen Sullivan-Leonard is the daughter of George Sullivan and sister of Dan Sullivan, who both served as mayor of Anchorage and were long active in Republican politics in Alaska. Her grandmother, Viola Murray Sullivan, was Alaska’s first woman mayor, serving briefly as mayor of Valdez 90 years ago. Colleen served in the House fairly recently, representing the district containing Wasilla city limits in between Lynn Gattis and Christopher Kurka. I believe she also served on the Wasilla City Council.

          There was another recent story I commented on where I went into considerable detail, describing events of nearly 40 years ago because they relate to more recent events. That was necessary. Given that Colleen left office less than three years ago and given the long history of her family in Alaska, I shouldn’t have had to go into much detail in this case.

  4. Why is the school district trying to fund road improvements? Never mind the Big Lake boat launch and parking lot–is this bond for schools and the MSB in general? It reads like this is a general bond but they are trying to sell it as an education bond.

    • Those are Borough projects not School District projects. They have some that benefit school routes and traffic improvements around schools. It’s a general road bond.

  5. I suspect ASD would like all Alaska school districts to be ‘in line’ with their agenda. I am proud of our school; we teach kids what they need, not what political types want.

    • Visit this link – ‘

  6. Prop 1 is a blatant pork barrel wish list. vote no and let them present a more realistic proposition next time. Items such as “Mountain Trails Drive upgrade” are as necessary as Dolly Parton needing breast implants.

  7. When outside interests make up the majority of your campaign funds, it is nothing less than election manipulation. Because of our small population, it is easy to change the outcome of an election in order to change the political demographics of small areas until you own the whole state. Anchorage for example.

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