Mayor Bronson nominates new pick to head Anchorage libraries

Mayor Dave Bronson has selected a new nominee, Robert Hudson, to serve as Anchorage library director, the administration said Monday.

The city’s library system has been a political flashpoint under the current administration, which until now has put forward nominees who were lacking the minimum qualifications set out for the director position and were unable to win confirmation by a majority of Assembly members.

“Robert is more than qualified to lead the Municipality of Anchorage’s libraries,” Bronson said in a written statement. “I look forward to him working with my administration, the Anchorage Assembly, and the people of Anchorage to move our libraries into the future.”

According to the administration, Hudson has spent 18 years working in library systems, most of them at institutions of higher education, as well as in Canada and Qatar. He holds a master’s degree in library and information science from the University of British Columbia.

It wasn’t immediately clear if Hudson has ties to Alaska. A LinkedIn profile for a person with the same name and professional history indicates that he lives in Iowa, where he works as the director of library services at Upper Iowa University. A request to the Bronson administration seeking further information wasn’t returned by Monday evening.

The administration specified in its statement that the current library deputy director, Judy Eledge, will continue working in that position. Eledge is a conservative activist who was previously nominated to head the library but chose to withdraw her name from consideration rather than undergo Assembly vetting.

Zachariah Hughes

Zachariah Hughes covers Anchorage government, the military, dog mushing, subsistence issues and general assignments for the Anchorage Daily News. He also helps produce the ADN's weekly politics podcast. Prior to joining the ADN, he worked in Alaska’s public radio network, and got his start in journalism at KNOM in Nome.