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ISU alum Chris Carlson writes book about role of Cecil Andrus in Alaska lands legislation

September 25, 2015
ISU Marketing and Communications

POCATELLO — Idaho State University alumnus Chris Carlson recently published a new book “Eye on the Caribou,” which tells the story of the critical role former four-term Idaho Gov. Cecil D. Andrus played in securing the historic 1980 Alaska lands legislation.

Carlson, the long-time former-press secretary to Andrus, believes “Eye on the Caribou” will provide previously little-known pieces of information to future historians.

Examples Carlson noted included a 1978 summer trip Andrus and former-President Jimmy Carter spent along Idaho’s Salmon River where the pair strategized for Carter to use his authority under the Antiquities Act to make the largest national monuments in history, a secret meeting between Alaska Governor Jay Hammond and Andrus in 1979 and the 1980 crossover vote coordinated by late-Senator Ted Stevens to defeat senatorial colleague Mike Gravel in the Democratic Primary.

Previously, Carlson produced the well-reviewed biography “Cecil Andrus: Idaho’s Greatest Governor” in 2011, as well as the 2013 book “Medimont Reflections” in 2013 which consisted of 13 essays detailing other issues and political figures Carlson worked with in his 40 years of public involvement. Carlson graduated from ISU in 1970 with a Master of Arts degree in English.

“Eye on the Caribou” is available for $16.95 at, directly from the author or directly from publisher Ridenbaugh Press at


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