From an Anchorage Daily News profile of Todd Palin, the husband of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, Republican candidate for vice president.
White-collar jobs in law, education or health care are typical among the current crop of first spouses, but Palin spent nearly 20 years as a blue-collar employee in the oil fields of the North Slope. And every summer he heads west to his birthplace in Dillingham to work the Bristol Bay commercial salmon fishery from his property on the Nushagak River.
A lifetime of manual labor in the state’s two largest and most physically demanding industries is helping Palin carve out his role as Alaska’s first spouse, or “first dude,” a nickname he has in common with the Kansas governor’s husband, Gary Sebelius.
Like other first spouses around the country, Palin has been asked to champion an array of causes or institutions since his wife took office in December.
His favorite is steering young Alaskans toward stable jobs in the oil and gas industry. It’s a singular choice among his counterparts, whose pet issues include schools, public health, domestic violence, poverty or the arts.
It’s great to see any person in the public eye pushing industry as a good place to build a career.
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