City of Seward, Opinion, Politics

Op-Ed on loss of valued former city employee

Council Chamber was packed at the January 23 City Council meeting. Chairs had to be set up and some people stood. At the beginning of the meeting during Citizen’s Comments, three people spoke in support of Marc Swanson and Heather McClain, the recipients of the 2016 Historic Preservation Award.

Heather, accompanied by members of her family and friends, flew all the way from Juneau then drove down to Seward in challenging winter driving conditions to personally receive her award.

Historic Preservation Commissioner Chair, Linda Lasota detailed the numerous contributions of Marc and Heather to preserve and protect our area’s history, and educate the public.

HP Commissioner John French echoed Linda’s comments and asked all those in the audience who came to show support of Heather and Marc to stand. Just about everyone stood up and applauded.


I spoke. It was a bittersweet moment. Heather did not want to leave her position as Seward Community Library Museum curator. She could be a poster child for all the city employees who were harassed and bullied until many were forced to quit or were unfairly fired. I am dismayed that she no longer here; we have lost a valued employee and member of our community who did not want to leave.

After the two received their awards to sustained applause, Heather had to leave with her entourage to drive back to Anchorage through the storm. Most of the audience left as well. How I wish she were still here.

Carol Griswold


One Comment

  1. I’m sorry, Riley. It would be inappropriate to name names. I appreciate your interest in this important issue.