Dunleavy announces new legislative director ahead of 2023 session

the Alaska State Capitol
The Alaska State Capitol is seen on Wednesday, Dec. 21, 2022, in Juneau, Alaska. (Photo by James Brooks/Alaska Beacon)

Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy named Laura Stidolph as his legislative director, his office says. Stidolph is set to take office Jan. 2.

A Juneau resident, Stidolph will be the chief liaison between the executive branch and the legislative branch, and several returning legislators praised the choice, predicting she will be a good fit for the office.

Though not an executive or cabinet-level official, the legislative director traditionally is one of the most prominent executive-branch officials during the legislative session, serving as a de facto ambassador between the two branches of government.

“The legislative director’s role during the legislative session can’t be overstated,” Dunleavy said in a prepared statement. “Laura has a strong grasp of the legislative process, and over the course of her career, cultivated longstanding relationships with Alaska’s lawmakers and policy leaders. I look forward to many productive sessions with her as my legislative director.”

Stidolph, who served as deputy legislative director between 2020 and 2021, will return to the governor’s office from GCI, where she worked as the telecom company’s government affairs manager.

Stidolph replaces Vasilios “Akis” Gialopsos, who joined the Department of Natural Resources after serving as legislative director during the 2021 legislative session. Gialopsos briefly served as acting commissioner of that department before being replaced by John Boyle this month.

Stidolph will earn a salary of $150,000 per year, said Jeff Turner, the governor’s deputy communications director. That’s slightly above the amount earned by Gialopsos and the $145,002 earned by Miles Baker, the governor’s 2020 legislative director.

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