List of mayors of Fairbanks, Alaska

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Jim Matherly has been mayor of the City of Fairbanks since October 24, 2016. In this June 2016 photo, Matherly is shown speaking with a pair of youngsters while campaigning for the office at a street fair in downtown Fairbanks.

The following provides a listing of the individuals who have served as mayor of Fairbanks, Alaska,[1] as well as the ten mayors of the Fairbanks North Star Borough, a county equivalent which includes the city.

Fairbanks, a home rule city in the U.S. state of Alaska, was founded in 1901. Fairbanks incorporated as a town on November 10, 1903, pursuant to the original laws allowing for communities in Alaska to incorporate. Following changes in those laws during the latter territorial era, Fairbanks began its current designation as a city ca. 1950. When statehood became effective for Alaska in 1959, the Alaska Constitution provided for home rule, a status the citizens of Fairbanks ratified the following year.

The Fairbanks North Star Borough, which encompasses the city and several surrounding towns and villages, was established by an act of the Alaska State Legislature in 1963 (Chapter 52, Session Laws of Alaska 1963), and incorporated on January 1, 1964. The borough seat is in Fairbanks.

Mayors of City of Fairbanks[edit]

Steve Thompson (2010)
H. A. Boucher (1973)
Douglas Preston (1953)
Maurice Johnson (1960)

The city mayor was originally elected from amongst the council. This was later changed to the mayor being elected separately by voters for a two-year term, but serving as a figurehead, as the city was administered by a manager. The mayor began serving as the chief administrator of city government, serving a three-year term, in 1992.

  • 2016–present: Jim Matherly
  • 2013–2016: John Eberhart
  • 2010–2013: Jerry Cleworth
  • 2007–2010: Terry Strle
  • 2001–2007: Steve M. Thompson
  • 1992–2001: James C. Hayes
  • 1990–1992: Wayne S. Nelson
  • 1988–1990: James D. Nordale
  • 1982–1988: Bill Walley
  • 1980–1982: Ruth E. Burnett
  • 1978–1980: William Ransom Wood
  • 1972–1978: Harold Gillam
  • 1970–1972: Julian C. Rice
  • 1966–1970: Henry Aristide "Red" Boucher
  • 1965–1966: Sylvia Ringstad
  • 1962–1965: Darrell Brewington
  • 1960–1962: Joseph M. Ribar
  • 1957–1960: Paul B. Haggland
  • 1954–1957: Douglas Preston
  • 1952–1954: Ralph J. Rivers
  • 1950–1952: Robert Hoopes
  • 1949–1950: Maurice Johnson
  • 1948–1949: Ray Kohler
  • 1945–1948: Alfeld Hjalmar Nordale
  • 1943–1945: Howard G. Hughes
  • 1940–1943: William Growden
  • 1938–1940: Arthur Leslie Nerland
  • 1934–1938: E.B. Collins
  • 1933–1934: Arnold Nordale
  • 1931–1933: Jessie F. Bryant
  • 1925–1931: Dr. Frank De La Vergne
  • 1923–1925: Thomas A. Marquam
  • 1922–1923: R.W. Ferguson
  • 1921–1922: C.H. Woodward
  • 1919–1921: A.L. Wilbur
  • 1918–1919: E.E. Suter
  • 1917–1918: Henry T. Ray
  • 1917: G.M. Smith
  • 1916–1917: R.R. Meyers
  • 1915–1916: Andrew Nerland
  • 1913–1915: Murray C. Smith
  • 1913: E.C. Heacock
  • 1912–1913: Dan Driscoll
  • 1911–1912: F.S. Gordon
  • 1910–1911: A.J. Nordale
  • 1909–1910: Mel Sabin
  • 1909: Joseph Smith
  • 1908–1909: Fred Carter
  • 1907–1908: J. Barrack
  • 1906–1907: B.D. Mills
  • 1903–1906: E.T. Barnette

Mayors of Fairbanks North Star Borough[edit]

Then-borough mayor Jim Whitaker and current mayor Karl Kassel on the grandstand of the Fairbanks Labor Day parade in 2008. They are flanked by David Guttenberg, Ethan Berkowitz and Scott Kawasaki.
Jim Sampson (2008)
Juanita Helms (1959)
Bil Allen (1977)

The borough mayor's position was originally titled chairman, rather than mayor, until the mid-1970s, given the structure which the legislature had originally established for organized boroughs. The term of office had changed from two years to three years at around the same time.

  • 2015- Karl Kassel (D)
  • 2009–2015: Luke T. Hopkins (D)
  • 2003–2009: Jim Whitaker (R)
  • 2000–2003: Rhonda Boyles (R)
  • 1997–2000: Hank Hove
  • 1990–1997: Jim Sampson
  • 1985–1990: Juanita Helms
  • 1982–1985: Bill Allen
  • 1968–1982: John A. Carlson
  • 1966–1968: Harold Gillam
  • 1964–1966: John D. Schleppegrell

References[edit]

  1. ^ "2013 Annual Budget" (PDF). City of Fairbanks. p. 221. Retrieved February 7, 2015.