List of governors of American Samoa

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This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
American Samoa

This is a list of governors, etc. of the part of the Samoa islands (now comprising American Samoa) under United States administration since 1900.

From 1900 to 1977 govenors were appointed by the United States Government. Since that time they have been elected for 4-year terms by the people of American Samoa.

Commandant governors (1900–1905)[edit]

Term Incumbent Notes
17 February 1900 to 27 November 1901 Benjamin Franklin Tilley, Commandant 17 April 1900: Tutuila ceded to United States
27 November 1901 to 16 December 1902 Uriel Sebree, Commandant
16 December 1902 to 5 May 1903 Henry Minett, acting Commandant
5 May 1903 to 30 January 1905 Edmund Beardsley Underwood, Commandant/Governor 16 July 1904: Manu'a ceded to United States

Naval governors (1905–1951)[edit]

Term Incumbent Notes
30 January 1905 to 21 May 1908 Charles Brainard Taylor Moore, Governor
21 May 1908 to 10 November 1910 John Frederick Parker (Navy), Governor
10 November 1910 to 14 March 1913 William Michael Crose, Governor 17 July 1911: U.S. Naval Station Tutuila renamed American Samoa
14 March 1913 to 14 July 1913 Nathan Woodworth Post, acting Governor 1st Term
14 July 1913 to 2 October 1914 Clark Daniel Stearns, Governor
2 October 1914 to 6 December 1914 Nathan Woodworth Post, acting Governor 2nd Term
6 December 1914 to 1 March 1915 Charles Armijo Woodruff, acting Governor
1 March 1915 to 10 June 1919 John Martin Poyer, Governor
10 June 1919 to 3 November 1920 Warren Jay Terhune, Governor
11 November 1920 to 1 March 1922 Waldo A. Evans, Governor
1 March 1922 to 4 September 1923 Edwin Taylor Pollock, Governor
4 September 1923 to 17 March 1925 Edward Stanley Kellogg, Governor
17 March 1925 to 9 September 1927 Henry Francis Bryan, Governor
9 September 1927 to 2 August 1929 Stephen Victor Graham, Governor 20 February 1929: U.S. Congress recognition of the cession of Tutuila and Manu'a by their chiefs, with retrospective to 16 July 1904
2 August 1929 to 24 March 1931 Gatewood Sanders Lincoln, Governor 1st Term
24 March 1931 to 22 April 1931 James Sutherland Spore acting Governor
22 April 1931 to 17 July 1931 Arthur Tenney Emerson, acting Governor
17 July 1931 to 12 May 1932 Gatewood Sanders Lincoln, Governor 2nd Term
12 May 1932 to 10 April 1934 George Bertram Landenberger, Governor
10 April 1934 to 17 April 1934 Thomas Calloway Latimore, acting Governor
17 April 1934 to 15 January 1936 Otto Carl Dowling, Governor
15 January 1936 to 20 January 1936 Thomas Benjamin Fitzpatrick, acting Governor
20 January 1936 to 3 June 1938 MacGillivray Milne, Governor
26 June 1938 to 30 July 1940 Edward William Hanson, Governor
30 July 1940 to 8 August 1940 Jesse Rink Wallace, acting Governor
8 August 1940 to 5 June 1942 Laurence Wild, Governor
17 January 1942 to 25 April 1942 Henry Louis Larsen, Military Governor
5 June 1942 to 8 February 1944 John Gould Moyer, Governor
8 February 1944 to 27 January 1945 Allen Hobbs, Governor
27 January 1945 to 3 September 1945 Ralph Waldo Hungerford, Governor
3 September 1945 to 10 September 1945 Samuel Wakefield Canan, acting Governor
10 September 1945 to 22 April 1947 Harold Alexander Houser, Governor
22 April 1947 to 15 June 1949 Vernon Huber, Governor
7 July 1949 to 23 February 1951 Thomas Francis Darden, Jr., Governor

Appointed governors (1951–1978)[edit]

Civilian governor Took office Left office
Phelps Phelps.jpg Phelps Phelps
(1897–1981)
February 23, 1951 June 20, 1952
John Elliott.jpg John C. Elliott
(1919–2001)
July 16, 1952 November 23, 1952
No image.png James Arthur Ewing
(?–?)
November 28, 1952 March 4, 1953
Lawrence M. Judd (PP-74-3-007).jpg Lawrence M. Judd
(1887–1968)
March 4, 1953 August 5, 1953
Richard Barrett Lowe.jpg Richard Barrett Lowe
(1902–1972)
August 5, 1953 October 15, 1956
Peter Tali Coleman.jpg Peter Tali Coleman
(1919–1997)
October 13, 1956 May 24, 1961
No image.png Hyrum Rex Lee
(1910–2001)
May 24, 1961 July 31, 1967
Owen Aspinall.jpg Owen Stuart Aspinall
(1927–1997)
August 1, 1967 July 31, 1969
No image.png John Morse Haydon
(1920–1991)
August 1, 1969 October 14, 1974
No image.png Frank C. Mockler
(acting)
(1909–1993)
October 14, 1974 February 6, 1975
Earl B. Ruth.jpg Earl B. Ruth
(1916–1989)
February 6, 1975 September 30, 1976
No image.png Frank Barnett
(b. 1933)
October 1, 1976 May 27, 1977
No image.png Hyrum Rex Lee
(1910–2001)
May 28, 1977 January 3, 1978

Elected governors (1978–present)[edit]

No. Picture Governor Took office left office Party
51 Peter Tali Coleman.jpg Peter Tali Coleman
(1919–1997)
January 3, 1978 January 3, 1985 Republican
52 AP Lutali.jpg A. P. Lutali
(1919–2002)
January 3, 1985 January 2, 1989 Democratic
53 Peter Tali Coleman.jpg Peter Tali Coleman
(1919–1997)
January 2, 1989 January 3, 1993 Republican
54 AP Lutali.jpg A. P. Lutali
(1919–2002)
January 3, 1993 January 3, 1997 Democratic
55 GovSunia.jpg Tauese Sunia
(1941–2003)
January 3, 1997 March 26, 2003 Democratic
Togiola Tulafono.jpg Togiola Tulafono
(b. 1947)
March 26, 2003 April 7, 2003 Democratic
56 April 7, 2003 January 3, 2013
57 Lolo Moliga by James Kneubuhl.jpg Lolo Letalu Matalasi Moliga
(b. 1949)
January 3, 2013 Incumbent Non-partisan
(Independent)

Living former governors[edit]

There is one living former governor of American Samoa. The most recent-serving governor to die was Tauese Sunia (1997–2003), on March 26, 2003.

Name Gubernatorial term Date of birth
Togiola Tulafono 2003–2013 (1947-02-28) February 28, 1947 (age 67)

Latest election[edit]

Election results, Governor of American Samoa, November 6, 2012
Party Candidate Votes %
Independent Lolo Letalu Matalasi Moliga 4,372 33.5%
Democratic Faoa Aitofele Sunia 4,315 33.1%
Independent Afoa Moega Lutu 2,521 19.3%
Independent Salu Hunkin-Finau 893 6.8%
Independent Save Liuato Tuitele 763 5.8%
Independent Timothy Jones 189 1.4%
Totals 13,053 100%

Due to no candidate receiving more than 50% of the vote a runoff election was held.

Runoff election results, Governor of American Samoa, November 20, 2012
Party Candidate Votes %
Independent Lolo Letalu Matalasi Moliga 6,645 52.9%
Democratic Faoa Aitofele Sunia 5,908 47.1%
Totals 12,553 100%

References[edit]