Thursday, June 8, 2023
HomePoliticsRising star: Ketchikan school board member challenging Rep. Ortiz for House D-36

Rising star: Ketchikan school board member challenging Rep. Ortiz for House D-36

Leslie Becker, a Ketchikan School Board member and former Greater Ketchikan Chamber of Commerce executive director announced her run for Alaska State House for District 36. The district is currently served by Rep. Daniel Ortiz, a legislator who does not belong to a political party but who caucuses with the Democrats.

“Alaska is facing a serious budget crisis and without the immediate structuralchanges necessary to achieve a sustainable budget, the economic viability of Alaska will be at risk, ” Becker said. 

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“The mismanagement of Alaska’s resources has squandered billions in State savings, led to cuts in essential services, such as the Alaska Marine Highway system and resulted in the virtual elimination of the PFD paid to Alaskans.  I am motivated to run as your State House District 36th, representative to end the tax disparity imposed upon our communities, to prevent service shifting from the State that will increase local taxes, to protect the PFD and to assure that a sustainable budget includes a “Shared Sacrifice” from all Alaskans,” she wrote in her announcement.

The Legislature has failed Alaska and District 36th for many years, Becker said. She is running as a Republican in what has traditionally been a Republican stronghold. Ortiz has been an odd fit for the district as an undeclared, but was a popular public school teacher who is well known in Ketchikan.

Becker and her husband, Dr. Steven Becker, moved to Ketchikan in 2016. She had a 35-year career as a healthcare executive, working with hospitals, corporations, and multi-million-dollar budgets.

More about the candidate can be found on her campaign website.

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Suzanne Downing
Suzanne Downing
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.


  1. I think a requirement for the house should be you have to be poor or had been poor. Then you may understand how the little people feel when you sit on their cash.

  2. Rain all morning in Southeast . Seems a ray of sunshine has come our way…
    Enough of the carefree fiscal irresponsible… This is survival. Thank you for entering the fray
    Mrs Becker.

  3. Not in her district but as she is a health care executive I would love to hear her position on Medicaid expansion in Alaska and on the allegation that patients in the health care system are classified as covid -19 as a cause of death despite the fact that other health factors may have been the primary reason for death. I understand that the reimbursement is greater with that designation. Also, should we keep running ferries with huge subsidies and low passenger numbers.

  4. Got a funny feeling if she is elected she is most likely will raid the PFD and destroy it also will let the Alaska Ferry shut down and eliminated.

    She is very well off so she may have no idea what is it like Alaskan struggling paycheck to paycheck and not getting any help from their own PFD.
    So she is not a very good candidate and is an outsider who moved here since 2016 who knows nothing about the history of PFD.

    If she is for protecting the PFD & the Alaska Ferry then she needs to prove & convince us that she is for full support of PFD & Alaska Ferry system.

  5. Can’t wait to hear what the princess wants that requires a “…Shared Sacrifice from all Alaskans”.
    Must have something to do with kicking productive Alaskans while they’re down and rewarding their Ruling Class whose waste, fraud, and mismanagement created the “serious budget crisis”…
    Notice this creature says not one word about a forensic audit of state finances and management practices, just cuts right to the chase: “…Shared Sacrifice from all Alaskans”.
    Oh well, thanks to the successful Great Alaska LeDoux Vote Experiment, Mr. Ortiz probably doesn’t have much to worry about.

  6. Ketchikan would greatly benefit by having a Republican representative. Although I live in Juneau I have strong connections to Ketchikan. I think Leslie Becker is the candidate and person the district needs to represent their values in the legislature.

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