Michael T. Luhr was born in Petersburg,
Alaska, on August 22 to Donald H. Luhr and
Beulah E. (Reid) Luhr. Michael has one brother,
Robert, and two sisters, Donna and Joyce.
He attended elementary and high school in
Petersburg, graduating in 1974.
Michael started his working career at the age of
9. He served as a janitor at a Ben Franklin store
for two years, shelved boxes at a grocery store
for two years, and worked at a fish cannery for
another year. Through a school work program
at the age of 15, Michael worked at a machine
shop during the summers until graduation.
Upon graduating from high school, Mike worked
with a logging company, a mining company, and
a road construction company. In 1980, he purchased
the floating machine shop where he
worked as a teenager, becoming the fourth
owner of the business.
In June of 1984, Michael met his wife Barbara
(Barb) at the local daycare facility where their
respective children were enrolled. Mike and
Barb had their first child, Bradee, in 1989, and
were married on January 8, 1991. Together they
have four children, Sabrina, Francis IV (John),
Justin, and Bradee, and five grandchildren.
Also in 1984, Barb joined Michael to operate
the machine shop. They worked together as sole
proprietors until 2011, when a group of fishermen
approached them with an offer they could
not refuse. With the support of 25 local fishermen,
Mike and Barb bought the shipyard in
Petersburg which had closed the previous year.
Today, the business employs 17 people and provides
a full-service ship store with vessel haulout,
engine service, and machine shop facilities.
Michael was proposed and initiated into
Petersburg Lodge No. 1615 in November 1977
by his father, Exalted Ruler Donald, along with
ten of his lifelong school friends.
He served as a Trustee from 1990 to 1998 and
was appointed as Esquire in 1998. He continued
through the Chairs and was named Exalted
Ruler in 2001–2002 and 2002–2003. He was
elected to the Trustees again, serving from 2003
to 2008. He has served as the Lodge Treasurer
Michael began his service at the State level
in 2004 when he was elected as Trustee. He
was elected and served as President of the
Alaska State Elks Association in 2009-2010
and continues to serve as Chair of the ASEA’s
Charitable Trust Fund, Advisory Committee
Chair, and on the Lodge Development Board.
At the Grand Lodge level, Michael was appointed
District Deputy Grand Exalted Ruler
of Alaska’s East District in 2005-2006, 20072008,
and 2008-2009. He was appointed to the
G/L-Lodge Activities/State Associations Committee
from 2010-2012. He was appointed as
Special Representative to the Alaska East District
in 2011, serving through December 2017.
In 2012, Michael was elected to represent Area
8 on the Board of Grand Trustees, serving as
Building Applications–West Member in 20122013,
as Secretary of the Board from 20132015,
and Vice Chairman in 2015-2016. He
was appointed as Special Deputy Grand Exalted
Ruler for the State of Alaska from 2016 to the
present. At the G/L Convention in Reno, Michael
was elected and installed as Grand Esteemed
Leading Knight and served in that capacity for
the 2017-2018 fraternal year.
On a personal level, Mike was very active in
baseball growing up and is in the Little League
Hall of Fame. He coached women’s softball and
Little League for many years until the Elks
became his passion. Children John and Bradee,
as well as son-in-law Adam, are all Members of
the Elks and were initiated by Michael.
“Working Together to Make a Difference”