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Sam Snyder, PhD, on where conservation, political organizing, and running intersect


Sam is an organizer and a communicator with over a decade of experience leading environmental/conservation political campaigns in Alaska. He has worked on state and federal policy campaigns, as well as electoral efforts of ballot measures and campaigns for state legislature (notably his wife’s successful run for Alaska State Legislature). In addition to his campaign work, he teaches “Civic Engagement” in the Center for Community Engagement and Learning at the University of Alaska-Anchorage and “Public Interest Communications” in the University of Florida’s College of Journalism and Communications.

Snyder also leads Wild Salmon Center’s public engagement efforts in Alaska. Notably, he has helped coordinate high profile salmon conservation campaigns that include stopping Pebble Mine in Bristol Bay, preventing the damming of the Susitna River, and a statewide ballot measure to update state fisheries laws. To balance it all he runs and skis as much as humanly possible. He lives, works, and plays on the unceded lands of the Dena’ina people (Anchorage, Alaska).

Discussed in this episode:

–Campaign to protect Bristol Bay

Pebble Mine, one of the greatest threats to Alaskan salmon

Mini documentary on Sam

United tribes of Bristol Bay

–53% of the global sockeye catch comes from Bristol bay

Take action to stop the Pebble Mine: 

–Recent episode of Social Sport, Cut to the Chase with Emma and Kamilah: People-centered environmentalism

Jordan Daniel

The Overstory by Richard Powers

–“We have to be willing to ask questions as runners. And it’s hard. A lot of runners say, ‘I want to keep my running politics-free.’ But I think the past year, in particular, has shown us that we can’t—to have running be politics-free is a position of privilege. It doesn’t have to inundate all of your running, but it’s worth pausing every now and then and asking a few questions before you continue on your way.” -Sam Snyder

–“Running inherently gives people a sense of home; it is one of the things that makes us human.” -Sam Snyder

–Follow Sam on Instagram, Twitter

–-Follow Social Sport: Website, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter 

–-Subscribe to the Social Sport Newsletter

*This episode is sponsored by OPE Running. Go to and use code SOCIALSPORT for 15% off your order.

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