United in Defense of the Water Endorses Joe M. Rose for Ashland County Board, District 12

Mr. Rose is the incumbent and is currently serving on four committees of the Ashland County Board: Joint Impact Committee on Mining, Land and Water Conservation Committee, Zoning, and Long Range Planning Committee.

District 12 in Ashland County is unique, as it serves both Madeline Island and the Town of Sanborn, Ward 1, on the Bad River Reservation. Whoever represents this district is the voice of both island residents and the Bad River Band of Lake Superior Chippewa living in Sanborn.

In our estimation, Mr. Rose is the best qualified to represent these areas for several reasons:

Jan. 26, 2012 Joe Rose at the WI State Capitol to testify against the mining bill. Photo: Rebecca Kemble

Jan. 26, 2012 Joe Rose at the WI State Capitol to testify against the mining bill. Photo: Rebecca Kemble

Mr. Rose grew up on the Bad River Reservation and has served on the Ashland County Board in the past. His experience with both tribal and non-tribal governments, and his love of the water and resources instilled in him growing up on Lake Superior as a tribal member have given him the unique ability to represent native and non-native alike.

Mr. Rose has ties to Madeline Island that go back 500 years. 

Mr. Rose has consistently fought to protect the resources. Unlike his opponent, Mike Stark, a Scott Walker supporter and Republican who backed Gogebic Taconite and their attempts to take over the Penokee Hills with a 22-mile open-pit mountaintop removal iron ore mine, Mr. Rose has stood up his entire life to fight against such atrocities. In the first video below, Mr. Rose outlines his consistent stand for 35 years against a multitude of threats to the safety and health of the area.

Mr. Stark has since admitted his mistake in aggressively pushing through the “Responsible Mining” resolution while serving on the County Board in 2011 without consulting his constituents. UDW feels, however, that any future misjudgments of this nature could be devastating to the health and well-being of District 12.

Reicks Concentrated Animal Feed Operation. This is a huge disaster looming in Ashland County. A 26,000 hog CAFO is on the verge of being permitted in Eileen that would destroy the water of our region. Mr. Rose not only understands this imminent danger and explains it clearly in the video below, but is already working hard on several fronts to prevent the destruction of Lake Superior that would inevitably happen if this CAFO is allowed to move forward. He is a strong supporter of local control and understands the power of the Treaties.


February 2014, standing united in defense of the water, with Edith Leoso at a press conference in the Penokees. Photo: Rebecca Kemble

Mr. Rose is Chairman of the Anishinaabeg Environmental Protection Association. This sub-committee was formed by the Bad River Tribal Council, which works to protect the land and water for all. With Mr. Rose we have two governments standing up for us.

Mr. Rose has working relationships with all of the county’s State legislators, including Sen. Janet Bewley, Assemblywoman Beth Meyers, former Senator Bob Jauch, and State tribal leaders. He also is able to bring the Ashland County Board together and has used these relationships to broker support for important issues. Board Chair Pete Russo has said his presence on the Board is “invaluable” and has strong support from the Native American community.

Mr. Rose was Professor of Native American Studies for many years at Northland College. He has an excellent track record as an effective educator.

For these reasons and many more, United in Defense of the Water feels he is the best candidate to represent District 12.

Be sure you are registered to vote:

Information on the proper ID:

For more information, contact:

The League of Women Voters for Ashland and Bayfield Counties

Town of Sanborn

Town of La Pointe

Joe M. Rose speaking at the candidates forum, March 27, 2016 at La Pointe Town Hall.