|Mayor of Anchorage|
July 1, 2015
|Preceded by||Dan Sullivan|
|Member of the
Alaska House of Representatives
from the 26th district
13th district (1997–2003)
January 13, 1997 – January 15, 2007
|Preceded by||Cynthia Toohey|
|Succeeded by||Lindsey Holmes|
February 4, 1962 |
San Francisco, California, U.S.
|Alma mater||Harvard University (B.A.)
University of Cambridge (M.Phil.)
University of California (J.D.)
Ethan A. Berkowitz (born February 4, 1962) is an American politician who is the current mayor of Anchorage, Alaska. From 1997 to 2007 he was the Alaska State Representative for District 26, serving as the Democratic Party Minority Leader from 1999 to 2007. He was the Democratic nominee for lieutenant governor in 2006, for Alaska's at-large congressional district in 2008 and for governor in 2010. He was elected mayor of Anchorage in 2015.
Early life and education
Berkowitz was born on February 4, 1962 in San Francisco, California. He received his degrees from Harvard College (1983, government and economics, with honors), Cambridge University (MPhil, polar studies, 1986), and The University of California Hastings College of Law (1990). He moved to Alaska in 1990 and is a lawyer and business owner.
Alaska House of Representatives
Further information: 24th Alaska State Legislature
Berkowitz was the Democratic Minority Leader in the Alaska House of Representatives from 1999 to 2007. He was first elected to represent District 26 (Anchorage) in 1996, and reelected in 1998, 2000, 2002, and 2004.
In the 2006 election, Berkowitz was the Democratic nominee for lieutenant governor of Alaska, running with gubernatorial nominee Tony Knowles. Knowles and Berkowitz were defeated in the general election by Sarah Palin and Sean Parnell, 48% to 41%.
In 2008, Berkowitz ran for election as U.S. Representative for Alaska's At-large congressional district, held by scandal-plagued Republican Don Young, who was seeking his 19th term in Congress. Berkowitz defeated Diane Benson in the August 26 Democratic primary by a substantial margin.
The initial results from the general election on November 4, 2008, showed Young leading the race, but with many absentee and provisional ballots left to be counted, the race was not called. On November 12, 2008, the media declared that Young, 75, had retained his seat in the United States House of Representatives. Young received 50% of the vote to Berkowitz's 45%.
Berkowitz conceded defeat on November 18, 2008, after counting of absentee and provisional ballots had mostly been completed and Young had a clearly insurmountable lead. Berkowitz received more votes in 2008 (142,560) than any Democrat who had ever run against Young for Congress, and the 2008 race was the closest any Democrat had come to unseating Young since 1990, when John Devens of Valdez received 48% of the vote.
Berkowitz indicated he was interested in challenging incumbent Governor Sarah Palin before her surprise resignation in 2009. Berkowitz entered the race despite Palin's resignation and on August 24, 2010, he defeated State Senator Hollis S. French to win the Democratic nomination. He and running mate Diane E. Benson faced incumbent Republican Governor Sean Parnell in the November general election and were defeated 59% to 38%.
Berkowitz ran for mayor of Anchorage in 2015. He finished ahead of the rest of the field in the nonpartisan primary on April 7, advancing to a runoff with Assemblywoman Amy Demboski. He was endorsed by the third-place finisher, former Republican state representative Andrew Halcro. He won the May 5 runoff election by a 19-point margin.
Comments Berkowitz had made on the Bernadette and Berkowitz Show attracted controversy. In the context of a debate on October 13, 2014, with co-host Bernadette Wilson over same-sex marriage, Berkowitz had said, "I support the idea of adults being able to choose who they have a relationship with. Father and son should be allowed to marry, if they’re both consenting adults — if you’re defining marriage as the bundle of rights and privileges that’s now accrued to people, then yes." Berkowitz later called the remark a "hypothetical insinuation", denying that he supports incest.
Mayor of Anchorage
On July 1, 2015, Berkowitz was sworn in as Anchorage's mayor. In his inauguration speech, he urged city residents and leaders to work to overcome differences and "rise above the immediacy and smallness of the moment".
- , State of Alaska, Division of Elections, 1996. Retrieved April 29, 2001
- Michael O'Brien, "Stevens wins primary, Young locked in a nail biter", TheHill.com, August 27, 2008.
- ap.google.com, Young retains US House seat in Alaska[dead link]
- kfor.com, Young retains US House seat in Alaska
- Anchorage Daily News, The other congressional race – Berkowitz concedes to Young Archived May 16, 2013, at the Wayback Machine.
- "This Democrat Is Itching To Run Against Sarah Palin for Governor – The Eye (CQ Politics)". Blogs.cqpolitics.com. May 27, 2009. Archived from the original on May 31, 2009. Retrieved August 29, 2010.
- Election Night 2010: Incumbents Parnell and Young Re-Elected, Possibly Murkowski APRN October 3, 2010
- "Halcro makes last-minute Berkowitz endorsement in mayoral race". Pipeline. May 4, 2015. Retrieved May 5, 2015.
- Klint, Chris (May 5, 2015). "Berkowitz defeats Demboski by wide margin to become Anchorage mayor". KTUU-TV. Archived from the original on May 7, 2015. Retrieved May 5, 2015.
- "Berkowitz holds big lead over Demboski in runoff race for mayor". Alaska Dispatch News. May 5, 2015. Retrieved May 5, 2015.
- Marans, Daniel, "Incest Becomes Last-Minute Campaign Issue In Anchorage Mayoral Race," Huffington Post, May 5, 2015. Retrieved September 4, 2016.
- Wilson, Bernadette, "Surprise: Anchorage Mayoral Candidate Ethan Berkowitz Really Did Support Disgusting Father-Son Marriage," Restoring Liberty, May 2, 2015. Retrieved September 4, 2016.
- Recording of remark[permanent dead link]: "On eve of Election Day, recording of provocative radio interview released," KTUU TV, May 4, 2015. Retrieved September 4, 2016.
- Kelly, Devin (July 1, 2015). "Berkowitz sworn in as Anchorage mayor in downtown ceremony". Alaska Dispatch News. Retrieved July 1, 2015.
- "Berkowitz goes to work for consulting firm". Alaskadispatch.com. February 11, 2011. Retrieved March 12, 2011.
- Kelly, Devin, "Anchorage radio station KFQD drops Bernadette Wilson's show," Anchorage Dispatch News, December 31, 2015, updated July 8, 2016. Retrieved September 4, 2016.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Ethan Berkowitz.|
- Mayor's Office Website
- Ethan Berkowitz for Mayor of Anchorage official campaign website
- Profile at Project Vote Smart
- Financial information (federal office) at the Federal Election Commission
- Ethan Berkowitz at 100 Years of Alaska's Legislature
- Appearances on C-SPAN
|Minority Leader of the Alaska House of Representatives
|Mayor of Anchorage
|Party political offices|
|Leader of the Democratic Party in the Alaska House of Representatives
|Democratic nominee for Lieutenant Governor of Alaska
|Democratic nominee for Governor of Alaska