Former Yukon reality TV star named to AK Board of Fisheries

"Yukon Men" TV star Stan Zuray of Tanana was quietly named to the Fish Board by Gov. Dunleavy.

by | February 8, 2023

Alaska gov provided no notice nor input on the new appointment

Many in Alaska’s fishing industry will be surprised to learn that a former reality television star is the newest member on the state Board of Fisheries (BOF).

With no publicity, introduction or input, Stan Zuray of Tanana was appointed to the Board by Governor Mike Dunleavy on Dec. 29, according to the Alaska Legislature’s House Journal.

Fisheries writer Wesley Loy was the first to post the news as “a quiet board appointment” on his Deckboss blog.

Zuray starred in the reality TV series “Yukon Men” which aired on the Discovery Channel from 2012 through 2016. The show was based in Tanana which is located in Interior Alaska near the junction of the Tanana and Yukon Rivers.

Zuray replaces David Weisz of Wasilla who resigned from the BOF last November after serving for one year. His term was set to expire in 2024. Weisz is head of the Three Bears Alaska grocery store chain. He also previously served on the Alaska Board of Game.

In his resignation letter dated October 31, Weisz said he was stepping down due to “personal circumstances and the time allocation required to do the job properly.”

The BOF member page states that new member Stan Zuray was born in Boston and moved to Tanana in 1973. His first occupations were trapping with his dog team and running a chum salmon instream incubation program. He later began a research effort into the declining size and numbers of Chinook salmon and infectious diseases at the Rapids Research Center.

Tanana, Alaska

For many years Zuray was chairman of his local ADF&G advisory committee and secretary of the Yukon River Drainage Fisheries Association.  

Zuray has mostly made his living from work as a subsistence and commercial fisherman until recently and now works as a mechanic and equipment operator in Tanana. Curiously, there is no mention of his being a longtime reality TV star in the Fish Board write up.

Stan Zuray of Tanana Credit: BOF

Each of the seven-members on the Board of Fisheries serves three year terms. The board oversees policy and management of subsistence, commercial, sport and personal use fisheries across Alaska.

Zuray’s appointment to the state Board of Fisheries runs through July 1, 2025. It must be confirmed by the Alaska Legislature.

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About Laine

Laine Welch has covered the Alaska fish beat for print and radio since 1988. She also has worked “behind the counter” at retail and wholesale seafood companies in Kodiak and on Cape Cod.


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