OLYMPIA (February 1, 2005) – The treaty Indian tribes in western Washington have named Michael Grayum as executive director of the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission. Grayum, 57, replaces James Anderson, 54, who served as NWIFC executive director for more than 20 years. Anderson will remain with the NWIFC part-time in an advisory role.
Formerly the head of the NWIFC Fishery Services Division, Grayum has been with the organization for 28 years. He was among the commission’s first employees upon its creation following the U.S. v. Washington ruling, also known as the Boldt Decision. The 1974 federal court ruling – later upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court – re-affirmed the tribes’ treaty-reserved salmon rights and established them as co-managers of the resource with the State of Washington.
The NWIFC promotes and supports the tribes in their role as natural resource managers. As executive director, Grayum will oversee an Olympia-based organization of 75 full and part-time employees providing services to 20 member tribes. Those services range from providing pathologists and laboratory facilities to assist tribal hatcheries, to providing biometricians and computer specialists to assist tribal staffs in the management of their fisheries. The NWIFC also provides a forum for the treaty tribes to address natural resource management issues of mutual concern, and enables the tribes to speak with a unified voice on regional and national matters.
“The treaty tribes are active participants in every facet of natural resource management in this region, and are leaders in efforts to preserve, protect and enhance those resources,” said Grayum. “Many challenges lie before us. I am confident that the tribes and NWIFC will continue to meet those challenges for the benefit of the natural resources and all who depend on them.”
Grayum and his wife, Susan, reside in Lacey.
For more information, contact: Tony Meyer, NWIFC, (360) 528-4325.