City councilman moves on to Kenai

Gabriel Saravia in the KMXT studios. (Photo by Kayla Desroches / KMXT)

Kayla Desroches/KMXT

A 15-year veteran of the Kodiak City Council is resigning.

Gabriel Saravia says he first took a seat on the council in 2003 at the encouragement of the then-mayor, who felt he’d represent a number of Kodiak residents.

“Because I’m Spanish, I work in a cannery, and I didn’t start working in the cannery as a manager, I started working in the cannery as a worker, and I know the people’s needs, and they convinced me to run at the time.”

Saravia is from Mexico and has spent most of his adult life in Kodiak.

He says he moved to the United States when he was sixteen and lived in Illinois and Indiana for three years before relocating to Alaska.

Once in Kodiak, he took a job as a worker at Westward Seafoods and moved up in the ranks until he became operations manager.

Now he’s accepted a job as production manager at Pacific Star Seafoods in Kenai.

Saravia looks back at his time on the city council and says he’s learned a lot about how government works.

“No matter how smart you are, alone by yourself you can do nothing. You have to be available to compromise and you have to be available to work with others, because everybody thinks differently, and maybe the goal is the same, but sometimes the roots aren’t the same.”

He counts the construction of the new Kodiak Police Department building and the establishment of the local jail as two projects he’s proud to have been involved in as a city councilman.

Saravia will officially present his resignation at the council’s regular meeting Thursday. Once it’s accepted, the council will then have 30 days to appoint another individual to the seat, who will fill the position until Saravia’s term was originally supposed to end in October.

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