Governor Walker Introduces Bill to Name New State Ferries

Press Release: 17-010

JUNEAU – Governor Bill Walker introduced legislation today naming two new state ferries that will come into service in late 2017. The two vessels are currently under construction at Vigor Alaska in Ketchikan. As required by Alaska law, each ferry bears the name of an Alaska glacier – the Motor Vessel Tazlina and the Motor Vessel Hubbard.

Last year, Governor Walker and Lieutenant Governor Byron Mallott reviewed hundreds of names submitted by Alaska students in an essay competition to name the two ferries.

“I am honored to include Alaska’s young people in the ferry naming process. Just like Benny Benson did when he designed the Alaska flag, these two students are leaving their mark in our state’s history,” Governor Walker said. “I look forward to seeing these beautiful vessels sail in Alaska waters for years to come.”

Tanalian School 7th grader Malea Voran of Port Alsworth proposed the name “Tazlina.” The Tazlina Glacier is named after the Tazlina River.  In her essay, Malea explained that name is an Ahtna Athabascan word meaning “swift river”, making it an appropriate name for a ferry.

“This name would remind us that even small things are capable of doing big things,” she said in her essay. “This small boat could be named after something big and inspiring.”

Eagle River High School 10th grader Taylor Thompson of Eagle River suggested the name “Hubbard.” The Hubbard Glacier flows 80 miles to its terminus at Disenchantment Bay, near Yakutat in the St. Elias Mountains. Originally named for National Geographic Society founder Gardiner G. Hubbard, the Hubbard Glacier has been advancing for over 100 years – unlike other glaciers.

“This glorious slab of ice has defied its predisposition and proved to be a true wonder,” Taylor wrote in her essay. “An Alaskan Ferry should be just as incredible.”

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Transmittal Letter to Senator Kelly (pdf)

Transmittal Letter to Representative Edgemon (pdf)

Author: Hans Rodvik

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