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We Build Alaska

Candidate for Alaska GOP chair has history of obscuring truth for personal gain

The Alaska Republican Party (ARP) state convention is slated to be held this weekend in Anchorage. Ann Brown, who has been the chair of the ARP since 2021, is stepping down and a new party chair will be elected. The election for the party chair position is scheduled to take place on April 20.

There are four candidates running for chair are:

  1. Mike Robbins, vice chair of the Alaska Republican Party and current executive director for Anchorage Community Development Authority
  2. Carmela Warfield, an officer of the ARP
  3. Jerry Ward, a former state senator who ran Donald Trump’s 2016 and 2020 campaigns in Alaska
  4. Nikki Rose, a former legislative staffer and former Anchorage Assembly candidate

Rose first gained attention when she ran for a special election in 2018 for the Anchorage Assembly seat vacated by former Anchorage Assembly member Tim Steele. Rose lost to now-former Anchorage Assembly member Austin Quinn-Davidson. During the campaign, Rose repeatedly posted photos on her official campaign Facebook page of herself posing with prominent elected officials.

The photos, along with a “paid for by” at the bottom implied Senator Lisa Murkowski (R – Alaska), Senator Dan Sullivan (R – Alaska), the late Senator Chris Birch, the Anchorage Police Department Employees Association, then-Federation of Community Councils Chair Matt Burkholder, and others were endorsing her run for Anchorage Assembly. However, none of these people had endorsed Rose. After these discrepancies were discovered, Rose was asked to remove several images from her official campaign Facebook page, which she did.

That wasn’t the only occasion Rose obscured the truth. In November of 2018, a large 7.1 magnitude earthquake hit Anchorage. Some residences in parts of Eagle River and Sand Lake were hit especially hard. Rose and her family lived in one of the homes that suffered considerable damage. Her story was covered extensively by the Anchorage Daily News and KTUU.

Due to the damage, the Rose family was advised not to live in the home without fixing its foundation. Rose set up a GoFundMe to cover “so many things from dishes to furniture… but the most costly damage is to the foundation, driveway, sewer line, fresh water line, and sump pump pipe, door frames, sheetrock, steps leading up to the house, and the steep slope encircling the house created by the house falling several inches.”

Rose’s GoFundMe took off. While the below screen cap shows over $7,000 raised, a previous Landmine article cites the sum of over $10,000 raised via the GoFundMe. Many earthquake related GoFundMe fundraisers from the same time period, like this one benefitting former Senator Charlie Huggins, are still available to view at GoFundMe.com. As of today, it appears the Rose Family Earthquake Relief fundraiser has been removed from the site.

Inconsistencies in Rose’s story raised questions once it was discovered that neither Rose nor her husband were the owner of the home. Records show the home was a zero-lot line owned by Annette Valdez. Valdez is the mother of Nikki Rose. While the Rose family was living at the home at the time of the earthquake, they did not own the home and their rental agreement with Valdez remains unclear. Rose never alluded to renting and always publicly referred to the property as “her home.” Every news story, Facebook post, and even the GoFundMe itself implied Rose was the homeowner and legally responsible for the home’s repairs, not that she was raising funds on behalf of her mother.

On January 29, 2019, Rose testified in front of the Anchorage Assembly on behalf of the Sand Lake Community Council in favor of including $500,000 into the Anchorage Road and Drainage Service Areas bond due to major earthquake damage in several Sand Lake neighborhoods. Assembly member Chris Constant asked Rose if she lived on one of the affected streets, as she failed to disclose that detail in her testimony. She referred to the property as her home, again implying ownership. Then-Assembly member Dick Traini thought it was important to bring up Rose’s “GoFundMe” and specifically inquired how much she had raised. “Not enough,” she replied.

Days later Rose was spotted at the 2019 Alaska Inaugural Ball honoring Governor Mike Dunleavy (R – Alaska) and then-Lieutenant Governor Kevin Meyer, who were both elected in 2018. It was reported by the Landmine that Rose purchased a table costing approximately $1,000 for the event. Weeks later Rose posted photos of her on vacation in Maui, Hawaii.

Large purchases like the inauguration table and the Hawaiian vacation made during Rose’s personal fundraising campaign raise questions about how the funds were spent. On their website, GoFundMe stresses the importance of being as transparent as possible about how funds raised will be handled. How much did Rose raise? Where did the money go? How much of the $10,000 was used for home repairs and how much was spent on dishes or furniture? What other items did Rose spend the money on? We do know what happened to the property – it was foreclosed in 2021 and the bank sold it for a cash price of $252,000.

While the ARP chair is a volunteer position, it is an important role. GOP voters have a right to hold Rose accountable regarding her GoFundMe and demand transparency regarding the $10,000 or more she raised to allegedly fix her mother’s property after claiming it was her own.

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Sally Duncan
1 month ago

Doesn’t pass the smell test.

Akwhitty
1 month ago
Reply to  Sally Duncan

Did you sanitize your fingers after you stuck the in Mary Peltola.

Dawn
1 month ago

Which of the other candidates are You supporting? Obviously You are collaborating with one or more of them to help their campaign.

Martin
1 month ago

That’s why I don’t contribute to Landmine. I wouldn’t want you to use my money for your vacation trip to Hawaii either.

Joseph Geldhof
28 days ago
Reply to  Martin

Any basis for this ultra-cheesy comment?

Pierre Lonewolf
1 month ago

Is she a member of the Americans for Prosperity group?…..

Rat Pack
1 month ago

What’s the problem ? It sounds like she’d be a perfect fit for the job.