Must Read Alaska advances under new ownership

“I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference.” – Robert Frost, “The Road Not Taken*”

In 2015, Must Read Alaska was launched to provide conservatives a voice in a media landscape that had been taken over by leftist operatives.

Publisher and founder Suzanne Downing, who moved to Alaska in 1969 as a teenager, has been at the helm for the past eight years, growing it and maintaining a big-tent platform to offer the “other side of the story,” and an unapologetic space for Alaskans to balance out the mainstream media’s narratives and its left-leaning spin.

Continued growth and durability are important, and Must Read Alaska is now well positioned to expand its reach under a new management structure: Alaska Gold Communications is the owner, led by businessman Jon Faulkner of Homer, Alaska. The company has a board of directors, and Suzanne Downing has a seat on that board and will run the day-to-day content operations for the foreseeable future to ensure a smooth transition.

“Those who know me understand that I’ve always been mission-driven and dedicated to small government, pro-business, pro-family, and pro-freedom,” Downing said. “But it’s time to make sure this project is built to last, and Jon Faulkner is completely aligned with the mission. Alaska is very fortunate to have him agree to take it on and grow it to the next level.”

Faulkner was born and raised in Alaska, and has lived in Homer for most of his life. He graduated from Harvard cum laude and a dual BA degree in American History & Literature, writing his honors thesis on ANSCA and the impact of for-profit corporations on Alaska Natives.  He returned to Alaska to start a family and business. He is the president of Land’s End Resort in Homer, and Home Port , a residential waterfront development at the mouth of Kenai River. Faulkner also worked in Prudhoe Bay, been a religious education teacher, a coach, is married, and is the father of five children. 

“I’m incredibly pleased that I can report to the people who have supported Must Read Alaska all these years that you have created something that is here to stay. I have always felt the duty to Must Read Alaska supporters and underwriters to set this enterprise up for future generations of Alaskans,” Downing said. “And you can count on me to be a big part of it going forward, as we take it to the next level.”

On a personal note, Downing said, “My mother is now 94, and the runway is getting short for her. I am going to be spending more time in coming months at her side, ensuring that she taxies safely to the gates, and so now is the time to make this transition. Family comes first.”

Although some things will naturally change over time — and some new, exciting features are planned for Must Read Alaska — the core mission will remain — to provide a strong media alternative for Alaskans far into the future.

“Thank you to everyone who has been a part of making Must Read Alaska rock solid for Alaska. Thank you to everyone who has had my back these many years. I cannot begin to express my appreciation for every single Alaskan who invests in MRAK, and hope you’ll continue to support this project as we take it into the future,” Downing said. “Help us make this transition. It’s well worth the time and investment to keep it going.”

*The Road Not Taken 

By Robert Frost

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,

And sorry I could not travel both

And be one traveler, long I stood

And looked down one as far as I could

To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,

And having perhaps the better claim,

Because it was grassy and wanted wear;

Though as for that the passing there

Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay

In leaves no step had trodden black.

Oh, I kept the first for another day!

Yet knowing how way leads on to way,

I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh

Somewhere ages and ages hence:

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—

I took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference.


  1. I am so sorry to see this transition Suzanne though I obviously understand. You did a stellar job. You had a good eye for useful hard news and were very fair with handling the comments. I wish you and your family the very best. I pray that your mother gracefully and peacefully finishes her race with you being able to be with her as much as possible. Godspeed.

    You have big shoes to fill Mr. Faulkner. I will be supporting you if you do it well. And I hope you do.

  2. Suzanne, you are truly one of Alaska’s stars. Rob and I have enjoyed supporting you and your hard journalistic work these past years, but being a good daughter and being there for your Mom will warm her heart. God be with you on this new journey. And, congratulations to Jon Faulkner 👏.

  3. MUCH LOVE AND ADMIRATION FOR YOU SUZANNE. You have led the way setting the meets and bounds of engaging the unaware and ignorant folks who must be exposed to Truth and the pursuit of Justice for all. Thanks for showing us IN SO MANY WAYS, that you are a GREAT ALASKAN completing her present task for The Lord and Alaska People.

  4. Thank you Suzanne! You’ve done the work of 10 people. Always telling our story and perspective. Without a way to communicate the state would have gone totally left already.

  5. Congratulations on a fine job well done Suzanne! Excellent choice.
    Happy trails to your Mother.
    I would do exactly the same if my mother was alive at 94.
    I spent time with a 94 yr old Grandmother who was a German immigrant who migrated from Odessa Russia (Ukraine) to America well over a hundred years ago who settled in North Dakota. Her stories were amazing that I still remember today.

  6. On an interim status? Alaska’s leadership has a very short list who is capable to at least manage organizations day to day operations. Anyone who attended Harvard within last 60 years, their ethics are questionable looking at where Harvard is today where their graduates stand today. Homer seems to attract one type of person abc they all hold the same position. I met one homer guest staying this week she just like all homer residents I met not in an admirable affectionate way not someone I could learn from them.

    No Alaskan leaders, yet, has developed the intellectual, spiritual maturity, and traits like Ms. Downing exemplifies here at MRAK. Her being at the helm steering the ship will be missed. For humble leaders they do well if they questioned their own way of thinking and opinion positions specifically about God and Isreal and Alaska’s need for God where it’s why Alaska is a dark place: where our young die before they can even see life can get better they can overcome through carrying their crosses, where our leaders self congratulate one another over mediocre successes, where government bureaucrats and union suppresses and strangles the freedom of Alaskans ingenuity, creativity, and independence, and where judicial councils and legislatures use their power to enforce their opinions upon Alaskans.

    Family do come first though before interests. Even the Bible in Titus gave the deacons and leaders of the church instructions their family must be first taken care of. Suzanne Downing wouldn’t be Suzanne not putting her mother first. With any big change of leadership the Best thing I learned watching guests visiting Alaska from more independent minded is the people continue running their race set before them. Keep pressing forward. Keep moving forward toward the goal that through efforts God from Heaven may show favor toward Alaska lifting her up out of the darkness surrounding us. Readers should recognize The ones who will determine MRAK’s future are Alaskan GenZ residents both the ones currently under 18 and the ones under 27 today not current Alaskan leaders who grown tolerating and accepting even participants to the corruption and destruction of Alaska and America foundational values and standards. The youth need their Alaskan parents to continue reading aloud to them and taking their schooling be it homeschooling in the parents own hands, or getting the older GenZ better educated while working and serving the public through trade.

  7. I’m so pleased that your exit strategy means spending more time with family and friends. It’s been fun chewing the fat with you over the years. I wish the best for you and your family. Stay in touch neighbor.

  8. Thank you Suzanne for your on-going work and effort to keep conservatives informed about governmental activities and how they effect our lives.

  9. Suzanne, I always knew I was in great company when you showed up to report a particular event. Thank you for being there for so many conservatives and center leaning Alaskans these last years. This is a very important platform that cannot become otherwise.

  10. Thank you Suzanne for choosing the less traveled road and re-invigorating the Fourth Estate in Alaska. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for providing a platform for Truth and Justice — you have made a very positive difference.

    Your work ethic and dedication is simply amazing. I’m thankful Mr. Faulkner has stepped up to the plate, enabling you to focus even more attention on your beloved mother. Congratulations and may God bless you!

  11. MRAK has always and probably will continue to be with you always at the helm. We understand family comes first. Many people before me has spoken my thoughts so as Not to repeat. I wish you the best and looking forward to that time when you see fit return.

  12. Best wishes always. Thank you for your fair and athletic reporting and your unusual tolerance. Congrats to Jon Faulkner for moving the conservative conversations forward for Alaska!

  13. All the best to you and your family Suzanne❤️ Sounds like you passed the torch to one who will keep the mission alive!👍 Thank you for all the years of real news!

  14. Suzanne, glad to see that MRAK will carry on and be more vibrant with the help of Mr Faulkner. Stay true to your God, family and Country. You are my nominee for an Alaska Freedom Award by adhering to the Freedom of the Press right. Keep going down that “road less travelled”. Godspeed. Linda & David.

  15. Well so much for must read, someone from Homer running MRAK, won’t be long before the lib tards start running there ideology.

    • Not the time for skepticism or trolls… At least trust Suzanne to have made a wise choice, which I believe she has.

  16. Exciting News! Indeed, Family comes first and it’s very admirable that you’ve committed to be by your Mothers side. Many people don’t know how difficult that efforts is but, it’s truly the best way to Love, Honor, and Respect our Parents. Good Job!!!

  17. Congratulations, Suzanne. And God bless your mother as you help her get ready for her next journey.
    Must Read Alaska has made an important impression on Alaska and Alaskans. I salute you and look forward to your return to the battle sometime in the future.

  18. You will never regret the time you spend with your mother while she is here on earth with us. May God bless you!

  19. Suzanne, thank you for creating and running “Must Read Alaska”, a pro-free-enterprise, pro-liberty, pro-common sense, pro-sanity, pro-prosperity news source. And thank you to Jon Faulkner and Alaska Gold Communications for joining in support of this noble endeavor.
    It gives me great comfort, that you, Suzanne, will have a seat on the board of directors and will continue in the operations of Must Read Alaska.
    I am grateful to your mother who gave us such a great daughter who has worked so hard to benefit Alaskans with a wealth of important and insightful articles.

  20. Thank you so very much Suzanne for putting your heart and soul into MRAK! You are an amazing inspiration to us all. I wish you peace while helping your mother. I too helped my mother pass gracefully and never regretted one second of the time I had with her ❤️

  21. Suzanne Downing,
    You are a hero to us loyal readers. You’ve single-handedly taken a ride into the darkened patches of Alaska and beckoned the warning call of creeping Marxism and Totalitarianism in this Last Frontier. You are the Paul Revere of 21st century Alaska. You are courageous (and the best darn writer in the business). Take good care of your mother and yourself. We still need you.
    Best ever,

  22. I am sorry to read this Suzanne but I understand . Thank you for MRAK and opening my eyes and giving me a honest perspective of the politics and shennanigans here in Alaska and beyond. You’ve built a strong following and fingers crossed this new fella will not let us down. God speed to you.

  23. Thank you Suzanne for the time and effort you had put forth. We now turn the page for the next chapter to see how the story continues. Prayers for your Dear Mother.

  24. What a wonderful gift you’ve given to us, Suzanne… thank you.
    Jon Faulkner will indeed have some big boots to fill… figuratively speaking, of course.
    Bless you for taking care of your mom, says a lot about you, all of it good.

  25. Suzanne, thanks for all the time you put in here and growing this source. I’ve always appreciated the way you’ve allowed comments from all sides of the conversation, even if I’m sure I’ve had a few blocked I’m sure that many more responses to my comments have been blocked and for that I apologize for wasting your valuable time.

    Best of luck in the future to you and your mother.

  26. Suzanne! You took the road less traveled, but I dare say you have many more miles to meander and be a force for good. Your race is not over and I admire the detour to improve the quality of your Mom’s life. The 5th commandment has a promise when you obey it and God keeps His word;)

    MRAK would not be the strong alternative to the liberal media that it is without your sacrifice. And I don’t say that lightly. I know you sacrificed sleep, friendships, and much more we don’t see.

    I’m so grateful you love Alaska and freedom for her people to pursue our dreams. Thanks for fighting and shedding the light on Big Government, Big Unions, and gutless two timing politicians. I think you’re a great writer, but your superpower is stamina and guts.

    We need MRAK (which is clear about its bias!) to reveal the one-sided perspective put forth by ADN and other legacy media that pretends to be objective. You are appreciated by thousands. Jim and I wish you and Mr. Faulkner and the rest of the MRAK leadership the best. Keep your seat at the editorial table, please💪

    We will happily continue to read and support you. Cheers!

    Kim and Jim Minnery

  27. Suzanne,

    You’ve given all of the budding writers in our household inspiration to report factually. Thank you for keeping journalism in Alaska alive, for basing your words in the truth, and for having a backbone strong enough to deal with the background noise. We are thankful and proud of you, grateful for all you’ve done for Alaskan families.

  28. I shared my Mom’s final few years with my brother, each of us taking turns caring for her in our childhood home for months at a time. It was difficult for our families, but I wouldn’t trade that precious time for anything on Earth. I was able to hold her hand as she passed away on the morning of her 92nd birthday, and that was precisely where I needed to be in that moment.
    Good luck to you and your precious Mom, Suzanne. You chose the correct path.

  29. Suzanne, like Paul Harvey I always consider you telling “the rest of the story”. You are faithfully reporting on all things Alaska and never shy away from the more embarrassing or difficult issues and subjects. You always allow rigorous debate in the comments and in doing so have given all a forum to find kindred spirits and lost souls.
    Thanks you!
    Wishing you and yours Fair Winds and Following Seas

    Excerpt from “The ship that sailed (Anonymous)”

    I’d rather be the ship that sails
    — And rides the billows wild and free;
    Than to be the ship that always fails
    — To leave its port and go to sea.

    I’d rather feel the sting of strife,
    — Where gales are born and tempests roar;
    Than to settle down to useless life
    — And rot in dry dock on the shore.

    I’d rather fight some mighty wave
    — With honor in supreme command;
    And fill at last a well-earned grave,
    — Than die in ease upon the sand.

    I’d rather drive where sea storms blow,
    — And be the ship that always failed.
    To make the ports where it would go,
    — Than be the ship that never sailed.

  30. Thank you Suzanne, for creating MRAk, and Thank you Jon, for bravely taking the helm! Alaska needs a balanced voice. I’m excited to continue my support.

  31. Thank you Suzanne… and my best regards to your awesome Mom too. BTW I was very impressed to hear you mentioned by Dan Bongino on his podcast. So impressed that I can’t even remember what it was about! Many times I learned about news that didn’t come out on legacy media for another whole day. (or ever too sometimes)

  32. In many ways, we MRAK followers feel like we are losing a best friend. Not in death or in break-up. But in connection. Many of us wake up every morning to a hot cup of coffee …..and MRAK. It’s how we’ve started our day and stayed in tune with Alaska and the world. You may be taking a new road less traveled, as indicated through your exquisite taste in poetry. On your next journey, many of us will be following you at the next fork in the road. You are a true trailblazer.

  33. Suzanne, your tireless efforts to the pro-liberty counterpart of the other main, radical leftist-slanted local media (the ADN and KTUU) have been both heroic and much appreciated. I don’t know how I could start (and sometimes end) my day without my MRAK fix!

    Best wishes to you and to your mother.

    • Got news for you Whidbey. She could easily just delete your comments from this board. You might ask, why doesn’t she? The answer, she does not fear your comments; she sees they do not reflect negatively on her; rather, she sees the reality that they reflect negatively on you. Its quite sad you cannot see that reality. We pray for you brother.

  34. So you’re cashing out, Madame Editor. Just like the cable news outlets, who knowingly and without regard to the damage done by pumping out extreme Right and Left-wing news, you really don’t care so long as there is profit in it for you. Like the song says, “take the money and run…”.

    Sadly, I guess that’s what unbridled Capitalism brings.

    • Dog, you are a master of the inappropriate ignorant comment – this is not the time to be your usual trollish self, for Suzanne has born your disagreeable disagreement patiently and well. Be thankful for a change!
      We love you Suzanne.

    • To Whidbey The Rat. Dogs have more character..Thanks for showing the brighter side of Marxism. I would rather be in Suzanne and Jens Heaven than to be in your living Hell.. I’m thankful to MRAK for exposing the evil out there.

      • Only a fine classy Editor in chief like Suzanne would allow Wouldbeafrog to croak.
        Some people just cant figure it out on their own.

    • TheDog,

      I wonder if we know you, “Whidbey Thedog.

      You won’t use your real name, and call yourself a dog. You’ve been blocked, but have some kind of a vendetta against Suzanne so that you now trash her using a VPN to get in — NOT CARING AT ALL that she’s quitting to take care of her 94-year-old mother, who lives in another state.

      Suzanne didn’t do Must Read for the money. Since you’re DEFINITELY not a Christian, you wouldn’t understand how God calls people to do things, giving them grace and the desire to do that mission.

      That’s what Must Read has been about. There was a great need, because the lying-by-omission-and-commission media that’s probably near and dear to your heart was all Alaskans were hearing, and was and still is destroying Alaska.

      Suzanne had the gifting, experience and dedication to report to Alaskans what the demon-led, fascist media made sure they did not report, so they could transform Alaska into something evil, which their evil hearts lead them to do, non-stop.

      It’s not easy to stand up to hate and wickedness, and all the lies, but she did, valiantly, and tirelessly — and with a real smile, not fake, like so many leftists put on.

      Love for Alaska and Alaskans fueled her, powered by the HOLY Spirit, who lives in Christians.

      Not the love of money, which non-Christians can’t understand, because the only way we can truly love people selflessly is with God’s love in us, enabling us — which is a wonderful thing when we find our calling and then live it.

      I’ll pray for you to become fully human someday, no longer being “the dog.”

      I pray that you’ll be able to forgive those who hurt you, which God will help you do if you let Him, so you can be part of the light, instead of the darkness during the rest of your days.

      Only then will you see clearly to help others remove the speck from their eyes, after you remove the plank from your own (Jesus in Matthew 7).

      Many people are not “love of money” driven, which is hard for carnal people to understand. But maybe you could ask God to help you see, and the apologize to Suzanne someday for being so cruel during this difficult decision for her.

      This is her baby that she created with a LOT of hard work, 24/7 non-stop for 8 years. No days off — always moderating comments, researching and writing.

      Only when we have the love of God in our hearts are we able to be a blessing to Alaska.

      I hope you decide to live for Christ someday, and walk in the light.

    • Your mother must be so proud of what a gracious and kind person she raised….(that’s sarcasm dear)
      I for one hope Suzanne has many many opportunities to enjoy the fruits of her labors.

    • Behold the inherently bitter, arrogant, intolerant and hateful face of the typical radical leftist.

      What a nasty, ugly and vile comment, Whidbey.
      What a miserable existence you must lead.

  35. A subscriber list has been generated. To the naysayers, in due time, in due time. Bon Voyage, safe trip and a fruitful landing.

  36. I admit I am a Democrat with some conservative values, however, I like to read multiple sources and keep an open mind. Thank you for all of your work and dedication to keeping us all informed. God Bless you and your family.

  37. Suzzane; I choose a quote that most fits you.

    Margaret Thatcher

    Thank You for letting this long-time Alaskan have his opinion 😉

    • Third Gen. A very appropriate comment!
      Thank you Suzanne, for your unbounded curiosity and thrist for the truth. You will be missed by many, especially me!

  38. MRAK enabled countless people to express their opinions and concerns to each other over the years. In the process, many relationshiips were established, strengthened, and enriched. A community of conservative Alaskans has been linked in a network for which MRAK is the hub; our state is strengthened accordingly. This widespread impact on Alaska results entirely from the tenacity and diligence of Suzanne Downing. We have been blessed.

  39. Thanks, Suzanne for starting MRAK. Good luck with your 94 year-old mother. I am sure she will appreciate your presence by her side. I hope this does not see the end of your writing, but will understand if it tails off. Above all, cherish your family. Life is so short.

  40. Thank you Suzanne. Family is always first. Treasure the time you have with them. We both know how quickly that can change. God bless you and your family.

  41. Take care of you and yours Suzanne, and thank you for creating a top bookmark on my computer.
    Autumn colours comes to all things, and with that we all keep growing a new.

  42. Thank you Suzanne for all your hard work and courage in bringing to light the truth and/or more facts that are so patently ignored by what seems to pass as journalism from the ADN. You are appreciated.

  43. The only other person who writes as clear and concise as Suzanne Downing is Victor Davis Hansen. We have been blessed in Alaska to get this caliber of writing and clear thinking logic.
    Thank you for all you’ve done, Suzanne. Godspeed on your next journey down the road less traveled.

  44. Alas, forever lasts not long enough, nor does change protract itself within ownership by one or the other.

    True magnificence of being and existence is but a fleeting storm, though said storm, at times, can achieve brief moments of perfection.

    Suzanne, you have achieved not only true magnificence of being and existence, but of said brief moments of perfection, which very few of any of us can attain, especially within your exit, and further existence.

    You have exemplified the message that one needs not shout to be heard within your quiet strength, and have led, by example, the strength needed to change the world, one message at a time.

    I, for one, shall always appreciate and follow your example.

    I wish you not only happiness, but contentment, based upon your leadership and resultant followship.

  45. Slightly concerned about this transition to Chambers of Commerce like voice. What I saw in the article, is zero mentioning of CONTINUING the CONSERVATIVE perspective and advocacy. What is NOT said speaks louder than what was said.

  46. Suzanne I love that photo that accompanied your article. Where was that taken? Thank you for all you have done for Alaska. We will really miss you.

    • That was on a road trip from Anchorage to Whitehorse recently. It was around Haines Junction maybe. Thank you for your kind words. – sd

  47. Suzanne, I appreciate your dedication. Enjoy your time with your mother. Some people talk others pick up the torch. You created a forum for people express their thoughts. Best of luck.

  48. You are an incredible person, Suzanne. Thank you for your dedication over the years. You’ve been the truth and light in often dark situations. Bless you and your mamma as you take on this next chapter with love, grace and care.

  49. Dear Suzanne: You’re a one-of-a-kind Alaska hero, a true professional, and a faithful friend. I knew John’s dad well, and have admired them both. I’m confident your Must Read legacy will be protected and will evolve as you would wish. Blessings to those closest to you as you may now be free to more fully focus on family. Dave Harbour

  50. Suzanne, I am so glad we got to meet and know you through all of our hard work attempting to thwart stolen elections and make ‘Make America Great Again’. Your voice through your writing was always a beacon of hope through action. I’ll look forward to your bylines and shared wisdom and knowledge. Thank you and enjoy the ‘less traveled path’.🇺🇸

  51. If my memory serves me right didn’t Alaska Dispatch news started as a conservative site also. Look at it now. Definitely hope mustread doesn’t go that route.

  52. Suzanne,
    Thank you for starting this publication. I have found it to be a guiding light in the fog of almost every liberal slanted publication out there. I remember when the news was fair, truthful and unbiased. We could rely on the media to (dig out the truth). When a media was going to give its opinion, it would announce that it was “An Editorial Comment”. Now almost all news is biased or slanted. You have kept us safe from these non news people. I hope your replacement does the same. May God bless you and your family.

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