Project Jukebox

Digital Branch of the University of Alaska Fairbanks Oral History Program

Theodore "Ted" Stevens

Ted Stevens

Ted Stevens was born in Indianapolis, Indiana in 1923. He earned his undergraduate degree from the University of California, Los Angeles in 1947 and graduated from Harvard Law School in 1950. He served in the United States Army Air Corps in the Second World War in China from 1943-1946. He came to Alaska in the early 1950s, where he practiced law and in 1953 became the district attorney in Fairbanks. During the struggle for Alaska Statehood, in 1956 Stevens became the legislative counsel for the Department of Interior in Washington, D.C., the assistant to the Secretary of the Interior in 1958, and chief counsel for the Department of the Interior in 1960. He returned to Anchorage, Alaska in 1961 to practice law, and was elected to the State House of Representatives in 1964 and 1966. On December 24, 1968, he was appointed as a Republican to the United States Senate representing Alaska to fill the vacancy caused by the death of E.L. Bartlett. Stevens was subsequently elected in a special election on November 3, 1970, to complete the unexpired term ending January 3, 1973. He continued as Alaska's US Senator until January 3, 2009, having lost the election to Democrat Mark Begich. During Stevens' long career in the Senate, he served in numerous leadership roles, such as; Republican whip (1977-1985); president pro tempore (2003-2007); chair, Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee (Ninety-fourth Congress), Select Committee on Ethics (Ninety-eighth and Ninety-ninth Congresses), Committee on Rules and Administration (One Hundred Fourth Congress ); Committee on Governmental Affairs (One Hundred Fourth Congress ), Committee on Appropriations (One Hundred Fifth and One Hundred Sixth Congresses, One Hundred Seventh Congress , One Hundred Eighth Congress); Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation (One Hundred Ninth Congress). Stevens' Senate career came to an end when he was indicted by a federal grand jury on July 29, 2008, for allegedly making false statements on financial disclosure forms. He was convicted on October 27, 2008, but on April 7, 2009, a federal judge dismissed the conviction. Ted Stevens died in a plane crash in southwestern Alaska on August 9, 2010 and is buried at Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Virginia.

Date of Birth:
Nov 18, 1923
Date of Death:
Aug 9, 2010
Theodore "Ted" Stevens appears in the following new Jukebox projects: