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Leman's roots run deep on the Peninsula

Posted: Thursday, January 03, 2002

State Senator Loren Leman, an Anchorage Republican, may have spent the last 13 winters in Juneau as a state legislator, but he has never missed a commercial fishing season in Ninilchik since he was conceived there 51 years ago.

The son of Nick and Marion Leman, Loren's family is a part of Alaska's history, his father was born in Ninilchik, and Cooper landing was named after his relative Nick Cooper. So it's natural that Leman supports a mandatory Alaska studies requirement for high school seniors, "This is something that I believe is important for students in Alaska schools. It will make them better students and citizens because so many people don't understand Alaska; they don't understand why we have place names, or the religious traditions and the diversity that we have in Alaska. So as a student understands how Alaska pieces together geographically, socially and economically, they begin to understand some of the battles that Alaska faces as a state," said Leman.

The Stanford educated civil engineer returned to the Peninsula recently to celebrate his 51st birthday with friends and supporters at the Peninsula Steak House in Soldotna. By the time he turns 52 Leman hopes to be Alaska's next Lt. Governor. First he'll have to defeat at least two other well known Republicans in next year's primaries, former Peninsula Legislator Gail Phillips, and State Senator Robin Taylor from Ketchikan. Earlier Leman joined his octogenarian father for lunch at the Soldotna Senior Center. "Growing up in Ninilchik was a tremendous experience.

Having the tradition that Dad has been able to share with me and his mother who I was able to grow up next to, gave me a tremendous opportunity to learn about the Russian American period and how this has formed our extended family and rich Alaskan heritage," said Leman.



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