Flags to be lowered for former North Pole Rep. Jeanette James

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Gov. Mike Dunleavy will lower the flag for former Rep. Jeanette James, who died this week. She was 91.

In 1998, James was first elected; she served 10 years for the North Pole area. She authored and passed several notable pieces of legislation including concealed handgun permits, landlord tenant reform, regulation reform, Fairbanks-Nome rail corridor, and the Alaska Public Building Fund. James served as chair of the House State Affairs Committee for six years and as the House majority leader for two years.

“Everyone who had the opportunity to meet Jeanette knew that she always treated everybody with respect and fairness,” said Gov. Dunleavy. “She grew up on a farm in Iowa where she learned the value of hard work and honesty, which laid the groundwork for her career in the Legislature. Rose and I wish to extend our sympathies to her friends and family here in Alaska, Oregon and Iowa.”

James was born on Nov. 19, 1929 in Maquoketa, Iowa. An accountant by training and trade, she attended high school in Woodburn, Ore. and Merritt Davis School of Commerce, in Salem, Ore. When she moved to Alaska she studied accounting at the Anchorage campus of the University of Alaska, before statehood and also later in her life.

She owned an accounting firm and served as vice chair and treasurer for the Republican Party, District 18. She also had membership in North Pole Rotary; North Pole Chamber of Commerce; Air Force Association, Alaska Outdoor Council, Alaska Farm Bureau, and Alaska Miners.

James was the mother of three. Her husband, James, died in 2012.

Gov. Dunleavy will order the Alaska state flag to be flown at half-staff on a date to be determined by the family of the late Rep. James.

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