Contributed by Josh Fryfogle
I just had the opportunity to sit and talk with Edith Grunwald, who recently sent a shockwave through the Alaskan political scene with her announcement that she is running for lieutenant governor.
A familiar name, Alaska came to know Edie after her son, David Grunwald, was murdered. We grieved with her, in person, online, on the news - it was the topic of concern for so many of us.
Her tireless effort to find her son, and the tragedy of that event, allowed Alaskans a chance to get to know Edie and her heart. For many Alaskans, that is more than enough reason to vote for Grunwald.
However, I left our meeting with a fuller understanding of who Edie Grunwald is, and why she is uniquely qualified to run for office.
In fact, she very well could be one of the most qualified politicians in the state, if you take her career and military experience into account.
First and foremost, voters might not realize that Edie Grunwald retired from the military at the rank of colonel. More than that, she was even approved by the Senate to serve as a general. Seriously folks, that is a formidable resume.
She is strongly interested in SB 91, a bill that has been widely criticized as soft on crime, contributing to the rise in crime that so many Alaskans are talking about lately. Of course, the loss of Edie’s son, David, qualifies her in a way that no one would choose.
Edie left the military, rather than pursuing her career path to the prestigious rank of general, because she wanted to spend time with David as he went through high school and college. And he was on track until his life was cut short. This left Edie’s heart and home with an emptiness, and an endless reason to affect change in Alaska. It was only natural, with her years of service to our country, that she channel her life experience back in to public service.
In addition to her military career, Edie holds two master’s degrees, one in Business Organizational Management and a master's in Strategy (Military and National Security) Sr. Certified Human Resources, through the Society of Human Resources Management (SHRM-SCP).
And when it comes to the economy, Grunwald plans to put her education and experience to the test. Although the public might primarily associate her with the epidemic of crime, because of how it has touched her family, she also happens to be someone of personal and public accomplishment - qualifications that would make any career politician envious.
We spoke about a variety of topics, and I captured some video during our interview that will soon be edited and shared online. This article is just to whet your interest, not just in my upcoming video interview, but the coming political race that is sure to capture the attention of everyone in our state.
After meeting with Edie, and learning more about her background, I found myself asking the obvious question:
Why is she running for Lt. Governor, why not Governor?
I’m willing to bet a lot of people are asking the same question