Alaska Democratic Socialists of America

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Alaska Democratic Socialists of America was affiliated to Democratic Socialists of America.


In the early 2000s Alaska DSA played a key role ithe formation of a Progressive Interior of Alaska coalition, bringing together labor, Greens, Democrats, liberal-to-radical faithbased members of different clergy, gay rights and peace activists. DSA members in Anchorage were involved in the formation of Alaskans for Income Tax Fairness, which worked to implement a progressive income tax to solve Alaska's budgetary shortfalls.

Members were also active in the Fairbanks Peace & Justice Coalition, which demonstrated against "the present administration’s policies and against the war every Saturday, rain, snow or shine. The local’s chair, Niilo Koponen, continued to send information packets out to all members. In 2003 the " Left is nearing a majority on the local Democratic Party committee".[1]

Alaska DSAers mostly work within other organizations, trying to educate people about democratic socialism and get them to join DSA as well. There’s the usual work in the ACLU and in the peace movement. But Dick Farris also reports that in 2006: “Presently members of the Fairbanks local of DSA are actively working to promote Fairbanks Open Radio, a progressive forum in the interior regarding alternative news. Currently we have a web site under Fairbanks Open Radio and hope to apply for a license for a radio station in the next FCC window of opportunity.... DSA members in Fairbanks have also been working with others to develop a consumers’ co-op in Fairbanks as an alternative to the big corporate giants who now have taken over small businesses there.”[2]

1992 activism

Alaska DSAers met December 9 1992, to discuss "Political Restructuring: Opportunities and Options in the 1990s."

In Alaska as elsewhere, 1992was a year of political gains for women. Two progressive Democraticwomen defeated two reactionary,pro-life male Republicans for State Senate seats representing South Anchorage and the Kenai Peninsula.[3]

Health care activism

In 1994 Alaska DSA continued to develop a network of health care activists. The climate for state-level activism improved dramatically in November when Democrat Tony Knowles, a committed single payer advocate, was elected governor.[4]

"Progressive policies"

In 1995, Fairbanks DSA closed down its office space in order to contribute its share to the office space of a new statewide progressive coalition. This coalition, which grew out of an April demonstration against the Contract With America, was designed to "monitor the behavior of Alaska's legislators and develop progressive policy proposals for the state. For more information,

Contact was Louise Silet.[5]

2008 election

DSA Alaska Secretary/Treasurer Dick Farris says that “overall, Democrats made gains” they can build on. They helped elect some members of the state legislature, and DSA members will be meeting with state representatives “to promote a progressive agenda for Alaska.”[6]


  1. Democratic Left, Fall 2003
  2. Left, Spring 2007
  3. Dem. Left, Jan./Feb. 1993. page 9
  4. Dem. Left, Jan./Feb. 1995, page 28
  5. Dem. Left, Sept./Oct 1995, page 40
  6. Democratic Left, Winter 2009