Mark standing on cliff overlooking the ocean.

Board Member Highlight: Mark Kansteiner

Mark started out in Times Beach, Missouri. He went to high school & college in Indiana. After a few months as an emergency room technician, Mark moved to Wyoming to work for the Forest Service. From there, he got a job on Prince of Wales Island out of Ketchikan and on to Kenai Lake in 1979. Then seasonal work for different agencies found him working at Beaufort Lagoon on the Arctic Ocean, then wildland fire fighting and being Smokey the Bear out of Copper Center and Big Lake. On to Kodiak, doing fisheries research and dodging bears at Karluk Lake while maintaining a home base in Seward. During the oil spill, he captured oiled birds and sea otters. 1998 was a big year for Mark. He found full-time work in Seward as an aquarist and diver at the SeaLife Center and met his wife-to-be, Colleen. After seven years, he returned to seasonal work as a Kenai Fjords National Park logistics coordinator. Retiring in 2017, he wanted to give back to the community. Having been in so many places in Alaska, he’s seen how nonprofits help those in need. He has served on the Puffin Public Broadcasting and Seward Senior Center boards and works on the local election board.

Mark says, “I am glad to be a part of Seward Community Foundation because it’s an opportunity to be involved in the improvement of the overall health and welfare of our community. The SCF endowment helps all the nonprofits in the Seward/Moose Pass area by offering the financial support that they need to meet their mission. Our local nonprofits provide services that otherwise might not be available. Being able to participate in this process is an honor.”