Jev and Martin Shelton
Jev began fishing back in high school, having grown up in the northwestern tip of Washington state. After taking a job as a public school teacher, he managed to dedicate a decent portion of each summer to fishing the waters around his hometown. As fortune would have it, a new career path took Jev to Alaska in the early 1970s, where, before long, he made fishing his primary pursuit.
Jev has kept fishing a family affair. His boat, the F/V Kirsten Anna, is named for his daughter, who took her first steps while at sea. Jev’s son Martin has recently started to captain the F/V Kirsten Anna after years of learning and laboring alongside his father. Like their longtime friends at Taku River Reds, Jev and Martin take time to pressure bleed each of the sockeye salmon they harvest. As Martin says, this work is all about “doing it right,” and treating their fish in a way that allows their incredible quality to shine through.
In addition to his work as a fisherman, Jev has long dedicated his time and energy to ensuring that Alaska’s fisheries remain vibrant for generations to come. A prominent figure involved in the creation and negotiation of the Pacific Salmon Treaty—a major accord that ensures the sustainable management of a vulnerable, shared resource—Jev continues to stay in touch with this side of the fishing industry in order to “keep ‘em honest.”