Visit to Alaska is Braithwaite’s first as Secretary of the Navy

    Ketchikan, Alaska (KINY) - This week, U.S. Senator Dan Sullivan hosted Secretary of the Navy Kenneth Braithwaite for the secretary’s first visit to Alaska since being appointed and confirmed.

    On Monday in Ketchikan, Sullivan and Braithwaite toured the Ketchikan Shipyard, visited the U.S. Navy acoustic facility on Back Island, and joined members of the community and veterans for a dinner and discussion.

    On Tuesday, Sullivan and Braithwaite traveled to Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson for briefings on the combined U.S. military forces in Alaska, the Joint Pacific Alaska Range Complex in the Interior, the Red-Flag-Alaska Air Force training exercises conducted several times per year at JPARC, opportunities for Marines to train in Alaska, and Arctic defense issues. 

    “It was an honor to host Secretary Braithwaite in Alaska several decades after he first set foot on Adak Island early in his Navy career,” said Senator Sullivan. “This visit—from Ketchikan to JBER, to Kodiak, and across to Adak—was a prime opportunity for the secretary to witness all that Alaska has to offer to the U.S. Navy and to our larger national defense. Our adversaries are expanding their infrastructure and capabilities in the Arctic, and the Pentagon is finally waking up to this reality. We’ve secured dramatic increases in the U.S. military’s presence in Alaska—totaling $1.6 billion dollars—including reaching a major milestone for the Nome Deep Draft Port project, one of what should be a series of ports along Alaska’s coast, numerous new Coast Guard vessels, and the building of six new icebreakers authorized in the defense bill two years ago. I made it clear to the secretary that these icebreakers should be home-ported in Alaska, and the maintenance of these new assets should be done in Alaska and by Alaskans—the most capable and hard-working Americans the Navy will find. Finally, I want to commend the Alaskans we met with along the way who did what they do best, showing off our state and the unique support we offer to the military. Secretary Braithwaite won’t soon forget this impactful visit to Alaska, and I expect we will have a strong partner in the Pentagon moving forward."

    Sullivan has been working for years to bring more Coast Guard and Navy vessels, personnel, and infrastructure to Alaska, particularly given the state’s strategic location and the dramatic increase in military and commercial activity in the Arctic.

    At the Ketchikan Shipyard, Secretary Braithwaite was able to tour the 70,000 square foot assembly hall and adjacent fabrication shop, one of the most modern yards in the entire country that offers year-round service of new construction, repairs, and refit of nearly any vessel.  


    More from News of the North


    • USDA Seafood Trade Relief Program

      The US Department of Agriculture Seafood Trade Relief Program has set aside $530 million for commercial fishermen hurt by the US – China trade war. Applicants can receive up to $250,000. This is a great opportunity for eligible fishermen and is especially timely given the additional fallout from COVID-19. US commercial fishermen who have a valid federal or state license or permit to catch seafood who bring their catch to shore and sell or transfer them to another party. that other party must be a legally permitted or licensed seafood dealer. alternatively, the catch can be processed at sea and sold by the same legally permitted entity that harvested or processed the product. Sign up is now through December 14th 2020, applications and additional information is available at

      at None
    • Wearable Art Show

      The Wearable Art Show, originally scheduled for Sept. 19th has been postponed until Feb, 27th. Those wanting to join the planning committee or having questions can contact Bobbi Jordan at or check out their website and FB page…

      at None
    • Read Harder Challenge

      Sitka Public Library offers printed lists of the Read Harder Challenge for teens and adults, an annual reading journey organized by Book Riot. The 24-task challenge, designed to help readers break out of their reading bubble and expand their worldview through books, runs for the year and participants can join at any time. For more information call Maite at 747- 4022.

      at None