From the Iditarod in Alaska to the SC7 Expedition

S.C. Floodwater Commission chair reflects on what’s to come here in the Palmetto State

By Alex Junes-Ward


Dr. Tom Mullikin, the world-renowned global expedition leader from Camden, S.C., returned from Alaska’s annual Iditarod dogsled race between Anchorage and Nome, earlier this week.

“The Iditarod race gained international fame as the ‘Great Race of Mercy,’ when no capable airplane pilot was available during Alaska’s diphtheria epidemic of 1925,” said Mullikin. “A team of heroic mushers [dogsledders] battled blizzard conditions and rushed serum to icebound Nome.”

Reflecting on Alaska and the Iditarod – a trek of approximately 1,100 miles across the southern half of the 49th U.S. state – Mullikin described what he and wife Virginia Ann witnessed from their scenic vantage point on Alaska’s glacial Portage Lake.

“While we were in Alaska, we took time to examine some of the issues impacting our natural environment,” said Mullikin, an attorney, university professor, and chair of the gubernatorially established S.C. Floodwater Commission. “Standing here on Portage Lake we saw firsthand an example of amplified global climate change. The lake now frozen was once the mighty Portage Glacier where less than 100 years ago ‘boasted 800 feet of vertical ice with bergs the size of the downtown Marriott regularly slicing off the top and plunging toward the earth.’”

Mullikin added: “According to NASA, as temperatures rise, glaciers melt faster than they accumulate new snow. As these ice sheets and glaciers melt, the water eventually runs into the ocean, causing sea level to rise.”

Mullikin said that the ongoing and increasing sea level rise is what South Carolina and other U.S. coastal states and nations around the world are confronting.

Focusing now on the forthcoming SOUTH CAROLINA SEVEN (SC7) Expedition, slated for an April 22 (Earth Day) start, Mullikin continued with an all-inclusive invitation: “Come join us on SC7 and learn how we can rebuild natural and cost-effective strategies for protecting the Lord’s garden. Plan to join the Resiliency Conference on May 20 -22 and learn how South Carolina is taking a position of global leadership and how you can be a part of it.”

For more information about SC7 and the forthcoming Resiliency Conference, please visit

– Pictured are Dr. Tom Mullikin and wife Virginia Ann Mullikin.

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