Stan Jones, the council’s director of administration and external affairs, will be retiring after more than 17 years of service to the council.
Born in Anchorage, Jones worked in newspapers and public radio before joining the citizens’ council in 1997. His stories for the Anchorage Daily News on the Exxon Valdez spill helped the paper win several regional and national awards.
Jones spent his first nine years at the council as the public information manager and was promoted to the role of director of external affairs in 2006. In 2010, he was further promoted to the position of director of administration and external affairs.
Jones has been instrumental in ensuring that the public and the media had access to accurate information about the council and its issues. During his tenure, he wrote numerous press releases, guest opinions and other educational and promotional pieces. He also managed the yearly recertification applications to the U.S. Coast Guard.
Jones worked closely with the council’s Legislative Affairs Committee to monitor developments in the Alaska Legislature and the U.S. Congress on matters related to the council’s mission. He worked with elected officials such as Sen. Lisa Murkowski, Sen. Mark Begich, and Rep. Don Young to secure passage of federal legislation to permanently preserve Prince William Sound’s system of double escort tugs for loaded oil tankers.
“Stan Jones is in a league all his own with his ability to articulate to the general public why oil spill prevention and response issues matter,” said Mark Swanson, executive director of the council, “Stan can justifiably share a lot of credit for many advances in prevention and response the council has seen during his tenure.”
Jones co-authored an award-winning book, “The Spill: Personal Stories from the Exxon Valdez Disaster,” an oral history of the Exxon Valdez oil spill. The book featured personal stories about the spill from over 60 people who experienced the disaster first-hand. The book was released in 2009 to coincide with the 20th anniversary of the Exxon spill.
Outside of his work at the council, Jones has written a series of four mystery novels about a character named Nathan Active. Nathan is an Inupiat Eskimo and Alaska State Trooper who solves crimes in the fictional village of Chukchi, north of the Arctic Circle.
Jones has quite a few plans post-retirement, including the continuation of the Nathan Active series. He has ideas for more novels, one of which has the working title of “Spenard Road.” He also plans to work two days a week at a federal agency dealing with natural gas projects in Alaska.
“We are going to miss him in the work place but hope to see him around and will certainly be looking for more books from Stan’s ever-fertile pen,” Swanson said.
In March, Jones and his wife, Susan, plan to “try to” drive to the community of Tuktoyaktuk, located on the shore of the Arctic Ocean. The community is only accessible by car during the winter months via the Tuktoyaktuk Winter Road, featured in the History Channel’s program, Ice Road Truckers.