Terje Søviknes

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Terje Søviknes
Terje soviknes utvalgt 02.jpg
Mayor of Os
Assumed office
Personal details
Born (1969-02-28) 28 February 1969 (age 46)
Os, Norway
Nationality Norwegian
Political party Progress Party
Children Two
Occupation Politician
Profession Fisherman

Terje Søviknes (born 28 February 1969) is a Norwegian politician, and the first politician of the Progress Party to become mayor of a Norwegian municipality, namely Os, Hordaland.[1] He was also a deputy member to the Norwegian Parliament from 1997 to 2001.[2]

Early life and education[edit]

Søviknes was born in Os, Norway to metalworker and fisherman Eirik Søviknes (born 1939) and store clerk Gunn Drange (born 1942). He grew up on Søvikneset in Lysefjorden.[3] He attended Os Senior high school from 1985 to 1988. He earned a degree in marine engineering from Bergen College of Engineering in 1992, and later studied at Norwegian School of Economics.[2]

Political career[edit]

Søviknes was from 1999 to 2001 vice chairman of the Progress Party together with Siv Jensen, and was considered as a possible successor to Carl I. Hagen as chairman of the party. He however became controversial after an incident at a party congress in 2001 where he had committed adultery with a 16 year old intoxicated member of the Youth of the Progress Party.[4] Søviknes is still mayor of Os and did not lose his local support after the incident. In fact, the support for the Progress Party in Os, from the 1999 local elections to the 2003 local elections increased from 36.6 to 45.7% (the highest share of votes for the party in a municipality for the election). The success was repeated in the 2007 local elections when he was reelected by a landslide. The candidate from the Conservative Party who came in second, jokingly commented that "You don't challenge Terje Søviknes in Os."[5] He was yet again reelected in the 2011 local elections, this time however by a far lesser margin. This led to speculation that he could be ousted from power by a coalition of the other parties. Søviknes remained in power with the support of the Conservative party.[6]

As Mayor of Os[edit]

Os has since by himself and the media been seen as a showcase municipality for the Progress Party.[7] This is as he in his first term as mayor achieved full kindergarten coverage, full nursing home coverage and started a program of well-being and health journeys to Spain and related locations. It was also established a "full" stop of immigration and a local Vinmonopol store.[7] Successful in being consecutively elected as mayor from 2003 to 2007, in this term the main issues was development of the city centre, better drug addiction recovery programs, development of schools and construction of a waterpark.[8] While the municipality was struggling with large deficits before Søviknes became mayor, this has since been turned into a significant surplus as of 2004.[9] His successful career as mayor of Os has gained him the nickname the "Wizard of Os" by the media.[10]

Personal life[edit]

Søviknes married his first wife, Janniche Askeland in 1998 and they have two children together.[11] In October 2011 they announced that they were separating.[12][13] He now lives with his new partner, 34-year old lawyer Linda Ellefsen Eide.[14] Eide, who besides being active as a Progress Party politician, is employed by a top law firm in Oslo.[15] Søviknes is an avid bridge enthusiast and former president of the Os Bridge Club.



  1. ^ "Terje Søviknes". Store norske leksikon. Oslo: Kunnskapsforlaget. Retrieved 30 May 2009. 
  2. ^ a b "Terje Søviknes" (in Norwegian). Stortinget.no. Retrieved 11 January 2010. 
  3. ^ Heggland, Gunvor. "Ordførar Terje Søviknes" (in Norwegian). Os kommune. Retrieved 13 October 2012. 
  4. ^ "16-åringen snakket ut" (in Norwegian). ba.no. 24 December 2002. Retrieved 30 May 2009. 
  5. ^ Solvang, Øystein (10 November 2007). "Ikke all makt til Søviknes". Nrk.no (in Norwegian). Retrieved 13 October 2012. 
  6. ^ Skarvøy, Lars-Joakim (15 October 2011). "Terje Søviknes fortsetter som Os-ordfører". Vg.no (in Norwegian). Retrieved 13 October 2012. 
  7. ^ a b Rønning, Tone (20 November 1999). "Hagens lille rike Os - utstillingsvindu for Frp's politikk". Dagbladet. 
  8. ^ Ueland, Margunn (9 October 2006). "Søviknes vurderer comeback". Aftenbladet. 
  9. ^ "Os kommune med overskudd". Dagens Næringsliv. 18 February 2005. 
  10. ^ Veiby, Gry Elisabeth (1 September 2007). "Bedre betalt enn Stoltenberg". NA24. 
  11. ^ "Terje Søviknes". TV2. 
  12. ^ Holmlund, Jan (29 October 2011). "Terje Søviknes og kone skiller lag". Kjendis.no (in Norwegian). Retrieved 13 October 2012. 
  13. ^ Bruarøy, Kjetil (28 October 2011). "Søviknes separerer seg". Midtsian.no (in Norwegian). Retrieved 13 October 2012. 
  14. ^ Rasmussen, Trond (27 March 2012). "Har funnet lykken med ni år yngre jurist". Seher.no (in Norwegian). Retrieved 13 October 2012. 
  15. ^ Varsi, Hege (27 March 2012). "Terje Søviknes (43) fant lykken med Linda Ellefsen (34)". Kjendis.no (in Norwegian). Retrieved 13 October 2012. 
  16. ^ Valaker, Ole (29 November 2011). "Terje Søviknes og Os kommune fikk klimapris". aftenposten.no (in Norwegian). Retrieved 13 October 2012.