|Mayor of Anchorage|
July 1, 2015
|Preceded by||Dan Sullivan|
|Member of the Alaska House of Representatives
from the 26th district
January 21, 2003 – January 15, 2007
|Succeeded by||Lindsey Holmes|
|Member of the Alaska House of Representatives
from the 13th district
January 13, 1997 – January 20, 2003
|Preceded by||Cynthia Toohey|
February 4, 1962 |
San Francisco, California, U.S.
|Alma mater||Harvard University
University of Cambridge
University of California, Hastings
Ethan A. Berkowitz (born February 4, 1962) is an American politician who is the Mayor of Anchorage, Alaska. He was previously the Alaska State Representative for District 26 from 1997 through 2007, 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 then re-elected 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, losing by 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 nineteenth 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, for his 19th term. Young received 50% of the vote compared to Berkowitz's 45%.
Berkowitz himself 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 for Lieutenant Governor Diane E. Benson faced incumbent Republican Governor Sean Parnell in the November general election and were defeated by a margin of 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 third-place finisher, former Republican state representative Andrew Halcro. He won the runoff election on May 5 by a 19-point margin.
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".
Berkowitz is currently the co-host of the Bernadette and Berkowitz Show on Anchorage radio station KFQD. During the 2015 mayoral campaign, comments he made on the show attracted controversy. During an argument with co-host Bernadette Wilson over same-sex marriage, Berkowitz 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." Wilson and his election opponent, Amy Demboski, were critical of the remark, which Berkowitz later called a "hypothetical insinuation", denying that he supports incest.
- , State of Alaska, Division of Elections, 1996. Retrieved 29 April 2015
- 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. 2009-05-27. Archived from the original on May 31, 2009. Retrieved 2010-08-29.
- Election Night 2010: Incumbents Parnell and Young Re-Elected, Possibly Murkowski APRN 3-10-2010
- "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.
- 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. 2011-02-11. Retrieved 2011-03-12.
- "On eve of Election Day, recording of provocative radio interview released". Pipeline. May 4, 2015. Retrieved May 5, 2015.
|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
|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