Elsie and Columbia
Howard Rosenfeld, Friday Harbor Art Studio

Howard 'Howie' Rosenfeld                 

321 Geneste St ·  Friday Harbor, WA  98250  

(360) 378-5788  howierosenfeld@gmail.com


NEW EXHIBIT: Image  #70 of a 157 image American Society Of Artists (ASMA) Pentagon Exhibition themed The Maritime History of the Creation and Defense of America is Howard Rosenfeld’s  Scrimshaw 2.5”X 8” U.S.S. Kearsarge vs C.S.S. Alabama Off Cherbourg, France. This exhibit of images of original artworks is in consultation with the Department of Defense and the Pentagon’s Patriotic Corridor Exhibit Program is scheduled to open in 2023. 


2006-2012 Two full terms of 2 (Charter adjustment) and 4 years. Represented the district that included the Town of Friday Harbor. For both my terms on the Town and County Councils there was way too much activity to include here. I was the County liaison to Washington State Ferries and Chair of the Ferry Advisory Committee, protecting our ferry service. For both Town and County I was on the County Board of Health for 10 years.


2000-2006 1 1/2 terms when I was elected to the County Council to represent the Town in a newly designated district.


Fire Chief, 1995 ~1998; Captain, 1989~1994; Lieutenant, 1985~1988; Volunteer Fire Fighter from 1981

As volunteer fire chief for the Town of Friday Harbor I was responsible for the safety of San Juan County’s only incorporated town, county seat, ferry landing, as well as a busy harbor and airport. Oversaw the recruitment, training, operations and administration of a 15-25 member volunteer, two-engine department during the busiest and biggest series of fire incidents in the history of the department to that date.


Consultant, 1995

Prepared and implemented the town’s bloodborne pathogen policy.


Owner, 1994~present

Owner, operator and founder of art studio, etching studio and custom picture framing. Marine artist specializing in detailed scrimshaw and copper drypoint engraving of sailing ships and whales. Created amulet prominently featured in movie FREE WILLY II. 


Owner, 1988~1994

Owner, operator and co-founder of art gallery, etching studio and custom picture framing. Sold art gallery part in 1994.


Executive Director, 1985~1987

Took over weak organization and raised it to a sound foundation. Tripled revenues. Structurally stabilized building and set up purchased plan that included a $250,000 purchase grant. Established Orca Adoption Program, instrumental in founding Lime Kiln Whale Watch Park, published popular journal CETUS and K-6 curriculum Gentle Giants Of The Sea, started first whale watch under contract with museum employees as naturalists and accomplished donation of 30 foot research vessel and its transport from Los Angeles. Maintained active research and education programs and co-directed marine mammal rescue attempt at Hubbard Glacier.


Epidemiologist, 1969~1970 

First county epidemiologist implementing experimental program based on the premise that the doctor/patient bond, which can play a valuable aid to the epidemiologist, is lost as soon as the patient leaves the doctor. To utilize this “bond” I performed most male VD examinations, establishing doctor/patient trust, which greatly facilitated the epidemiological interview. Many patients were additionally motivated to notify and bring in their sexual contacts for treatment, which was the fastest way to reduced community exposure and disease spread. Authorized to issue epi-treatment orders for sexual contacts at county hospital emergency room resulting in 24-hour treatment facility. Only county in CA to do epidemiology on private physician gonorrhea morbidity’s.  Carried out very popular VD lecture series throughout Sequoia High School District and elsewhere. This extremely successful and innovative clinic program became a victim of its own success when clinic patient load grew from 5-6/day to over 50/day with no additional budget support from the County and had to be curtailed.


Public Health Advisor, 1968

Assigned to Project ECHO in Michigan, assisting in the training of public health nurses and sanitarians in techniques of comprehensive health planning.


Assistant Zone Chief, 1965~1967

Assigned to Chaiyaphum Province (500,000 pop.) for Thailand National Malaria Eradication Program. Trained at WHO Malaria Eradication Training Center in Manila. Direct field supervision of residual insecticide spraying, blood sampling and patient treatment. Helped oversee 150 employees, 14 vehicles and a laboratory. By end of tour my zone was highest rated zone by independent WHO evaluation. Best PCV/coworker relationship in malaria program. Also originated and designed new program favored by Peace Corps Thailand to involve PCVs in Thailand VD Program.


Epidemiologist, 1963~1965

Syphilis Eradication Program. Specialized in health education, training and physician visitation in San Francisco. Transferred to New Haven and successfully established new program there.


BA zoology, 1963


·       Town of Friday Harbor Planning Commission

·       Commissioner, San Juan County Fire District 3

·       Artist member, American Society Of Marine Artists, 1982~present

·       Awarded 3rd, 2nd, 1st and Award Of Merit, 1980, 81, 82 and 89 respectively, for scrimshaw at Mystic Seaport’s International Marine Art Exhibition.

·       Artwork used in movies Kindergarten Cop, Practical Magic and Free Willy II and III.

·       Featured Artist, winter 1990 Eddie Bauer catalog.

·       Between 1971~1979 lived aboard and sailed west coast from Washington to Mexico and out to Hawaii aboard many traditional ships including the 130 foot replica whaler CARTHAGINIAN, 85 foot 1883 pilot schooner WANDERBIRD and my own 32 foot 1914 sloop FLIRT.

·       Sailboat delivery captain. Two trips San Francisco/Los Angeles and one round trip San Francisco/Mexico.

·       Published article ‘No Wrinkles’ in Wooden Boat Magazine #14. Article explained how to re-canvas a boat’s deck.

·       Amateur radio ham, N7FBC, active in emergency communications

Howie is married to Carrie Lacher, Mayor (2010 to present) of Friday Harbor.




“Moderation in all things, including moderation” is a phrase I used to hear often, but not so much lately. This has coincided with an increase in extremism, most notably in religion and politics. This extremism is affecting our daily lives more and more. There’s the war, terrorists, grid locked governments, and an inability for individuals to find common ground on so many issues of great importance. Meanwhile, the epitome of extremism, Islamic extremists, who are willing to blow themselves up (has anyone kept track of how many thousands?), might get their hands on a nuclear device.

I’ve always been attracted to the moderate middle and I’ve come to realize there might be a scientific basis favoring the middle: the balance of positive and negative energy in the Universe. There is, apparently, an equal amount of matter and anti-matter. It is now accepted as scientific fact that there is dark matter and dark energy to balance everything we see, even though the nature of these energies remains unknown. All of this infers a natural balance afforded by the middle.

Anecdotal evidence we all might have experienced is when contentious or partisan issues get settled where neither side is satisfied, yet works well. Laws and divorces fall into this category. Remember, our symbol of juris prudence is a blindfolded woman holding a balanced scale. 

If we look at history, every extreme government, left or right, has usually been a dismal failure, as well as one you would not want to live under. And the more extreme, it seems, the faster it falls. While moderate governments, ones you would like to live under, endure for long periods. In religion, the more extreme forms spawn tragic results like suicide bombers, Jonestown massacres, and pedophilia. And it’s not just people with bad intentions either. Studies show do gooders are the worst cheaters. We’ve seen this with popular, high moral value, preachers and politicians getting caught with hookers and drugs. 
This is not to say that extremism isn’t sometimes a good thing. Remember, the saying goes “including moderation”. It’s just that in general, extremism generates its own extreme problems. Newton’s third law of action = reaction. There are, unfortunately, way too many examples both in recent and ancient history. A commonly heard statement is “religion has killed more people than all the other wars”. I’m personally haunted by a 1948 quote by Edward R. Morrow who said “The greatest tragedy of World War II is that it could happen again tomorrow”. During that war many millions of average people were gripped by extremism to commit or condone horrendous acts. We’ve had more tragic examples since.
Unfortunately, extremists of all sorts are alive and well today. What can we do to prevent a future mass hysteria? We already know we can’t count on religion, and regular, book learning education hasn’t proved effective. One possible defense against extremism is to embrace moderation. While this means not always getting everything you want, moderation, in the long run, might be far better than the alternative.
Our American democracy is already ingeniously set-up as a moderate model with two major parties representing the Right and Left. The system is described to have “checks and balances”. Despite some serious problems we have now endured 230 years. This balance protects us if one party becomes extreme. However, it might not protect us if both became extreme or if one or the other party became too powerful. We came close with the rubber stamp Republican Congress and compliant corporate press between 2000 and 2006. We could now be in danger of tilting too far the other way depending on how much the voters turn against the failed administration in 2008?
In political science 101 they show a continuum with communism and fascism at opposite ends, except the continuum is not a straight line but a broken circle. This is because Communism and fascism are closer to each other than they are to the middle, way up at the top of the circle. Too many on the Left and the Right want nothing of the other, and each, respectively, fails to realize that too much left leads to communism and too much right leads to fascism. The middle, by default, will have elements of both. Not only nothing to worry about but something desirable. A balance.
I can’t help wondering if an extremist, possibly reading this, might consider themselves moderate? The human mind is infinitely adaptable, but I doubt it. I think they instead tend toward self-righteousness. A moderate person is prepared to question their beliefs. It was Socrates who said “the highest form of Human Excellence is to question oneself and others." 
So far these are mere words which can be twisted and perverted, Even the suicide bomber thinks they’re doing the right thing. The two most important action strategies we can take toward a moderate society are:
1.    An educational system that teaches critical thinking. This is not new thanks to Plato and Socrates, but teaching children how to think and question is not a part of most curricula.

2.    A free and independent press. One where the reporters are not afraid to lose their jobs or access if they ask the hard questions. We currently have a media largely controlled by the same corporate interests that play a major role in the government.

It would also help if there was a religion that taught skepticism? After all, isn’t it about the mystery?

Howard Howie Rosenfeld, March 2008