Former Republican Alaska lawmaker Hugh “Bud” Fate of Fairbanks died Thursday at age 91.
Fate, a dentist and U.S. Army veteran, represented the Fairbanks area from 2001-2004 in the state legislature. He also served as president to the University Board of Regents and state Board of Dental Examiners. Fate was an Army Corporal during the Korean War, and was tasked with mapping the Alaska-Canadian Highway during his service.
“An outspoken advocate of education, Bud was instrumental in founding the Fairbanks Native Association which fought for the establishment of high schools in Alaska’s rural communities, effectively ending an era of sending our children to boarding schools,” Gov. Mike Dunleavy said in an online statement.
Fate was married to late Athabascan leader Mary Jane Fate. The couple had three daughters.
Fate’s daughter Julie is married to U.S. Sen. Dan Sullivan. On social media, Sullivan said Fate was a role model who “lived a life of service to his country and to our state.”
Sullivan named Fate the “Alaskan of the week” for his 90th birthday in 2019. In a speech on the floor of the Senate, he said Fate was a legend in Alaska and “has been a rodeo cowboy, a college football player, a roughneck, a soldier, a gold miner, a carpenter, a hunter, a commercial and subsistence fisherman, a dog musher, a bush pilot, a dentist, a businessman, a state representative, an author, an artist, an all-around rabble-rouser — an Alaskan Renaissance man through and through.”
Fate and his wife, who was a dental assistant, traveled to rural Interior communities to provide dental services, Sullivan said.
Gov. Dunleavy ordered flags to fly at half-staff Monday to honor Fate’s life.