Dunleavy kicks off second term, swearing in with Lt. Gov. Dahlstrom in Anchorage

Fulfillment of Alaska’s state motto, ‘North to the Future,’ dominate governor and lieutenant governor’s remarks as they sign oaths of office
Fulfillment of Alaska’s state motto, ‘North to the Future,’ dominated the governor and lieutenant governor’s remarks as they signed their oaths of office
Published: Dec. 5, 2022 at 7:30 PM AKST
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - Incumbent Gov. Michael Dunleavy’s second term began Monday afternoon, swearing in for his second term as Alaska governor at the Alaska Airlines Center on the University of Alaska Anchorage campus.

Alongside Lt. Gov.-elect Nancy Dahlstrom, both took their oath of office and articulated their priorities for the upcoming term. The campaign message centered on natural resource development, protecting the Permanent Fund dividend, and reducing excess spending. That message resonated with Alaskans, as Dunleavy and Dahlstrom won outright by a considerable margin. He received nearly 132,00 votes, over 50% of the ballots.

The ceremony began at 1 p.m. following performances by the Alaska Native Heritage Center Dancers, the 11th Airborne Division Band, Stephen Holmstock, and members of the Pipeline Vocal Project.

Gov. Dunleavy expressed gratitude for his family’s and community’s support throughout his first term, which he spent navigating budget, public health, and economic crises. Dunleavy laughed along with the crowd while noting the unique challenges posed by working in the governance of one of the most unique states in America.

”What’s next, locusts, volcanoes,” Dunleavy said. “That’s the interesting thing about Alaska, right? We are used to our calamities here in the state of Alaska. Just in the past couple of weeks we’ve had a number of serious earthquakes but we all take in stride. And with your help over the past four years, we’ve gotten through some difficult times.”

Dunleavy is the first governor to win a second consecutive term in office since Tony Knowles in 1998. He’s also the first incumbent Republican to win re-election since Jay Hammond in 1978.

Dunleavy’s closing comments reiterated his commitment to Alaska’s state motto ‘North to the Future.’

“We have a tremendous opportunity over the next 4 years to work together, to make this a state that is going to be inviting for our kids and our grandkids, and to make us all proud,” Dunleavy said.