Mead Treadwell

Louis Mead Treadwell II (born March 21, 1956) is an American businessman and politician who served as lieutenant governor of Alaska from 2010 to 2014. Treadwell is the former Chair of the U.S. Arctic Research Commission serving from 2006 to 2010.[2] He is a member of the Republican Party and was a candidate for the 2014 U.S. Senate election in Alaska.

Mead Treadwell
Mead Treadwell, Photo 1.jpg
11th Lieutenant Governor of Alaska
In office
December 6, 2010 – December 1, 2014
GovernorSean Parnell
Preceded byCraig Campbell
Succeeded byByron Mallott
Chair of the United States Arctic Research Commission
In office
PresidentGeorge W. Bush
Barack Obama
Preceded byGeorge B. Newton[1]
Succeeded byFran Ulmer
Personal details
Louis Mead Treadwell II

(1956-03-21) March 21, 1956 (age 64)
New Haven, Connecticut, U.S.
Political partyRepublican
EducationYale University (BA)
Harvard University (MBA)

Early life, education, and early careerEdit

Treadwell was born in New Haven, Connecticut, the son of Anne and Timothy Treadwell. He grew up in the Sandy Hook section of Newtown, Connecticut, where his father was the former first selectman of Newtown; the Timothy B. Treadwell Memorial Park named in his late father's honor. Treadwell attended Newtown Public Schools and attended Sandy Hook Elementary school.[3][4] Treadwell attended high school at Newtown High School, and was then appointed by Senator Lowell Weicker as a Senate Page, attending the Senate Page School in DC. He then studied at the Hotchkiss School, in Lakeville, Connecticut, graduating in 1974 and was then accepted to Yale University.

In 1978, Treadwell graduated with his Bachelor of Arts in History from Yale. Later that year, he moved to Alaska to take an internship with former U.S. Secretary of Interior Wally Hickel's campaign for Governor of Alaska. Hickel lost a close contest to incumbent Republican Governor Jay S. Hammond in the primary election, coming short by 98 votes out of over 100,000 votes cast. After controversy including multiple recounts and court challenges, Hickel launched a write-in campaign in the general election, besting three of the four candidates on the ballot, though once again losing to Hammond. Following the election, Treadwell became a political reporter for the Anchorage Times.[5]

He then returned to the contiguous United States where he attended Harvard University and graduated with his Master of Business Administration from Harvard Business School in 1982.[6] After that, he was hired by Hickel's business company, Yukon Pacific Corporation, where he worked as Treasurer and later Vice President. Yukon Pacific was founded to investigate the possibility of building a trans-Alaska gas pipeline. Eventually Yukon Pacific was purchased by CSX in 1989.[5]

Early political career (1989–1994)Edit

In the wake of the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill, Treadwell left Yukon and went to Cordova, Alaska, to serve as the city's director of spill response. Cordova was badly impacted by the spill, which severely affected the area's fishing industry and disrupted the general ecology of the area. A September 1990 article in the Spartanburg Herald-Journal praised the cleanup efforts, saying that they had come along "quite well".[7] Treadwell expressed optimism about the ecological rebound, cautioning that, while over half of beaches appeared normal and the quantity of commercial fish catches was exceptionally strong, the long-term effects of the spill would not be apparent for "years to come".[7] In a 2006 piece on National Public Radio, Treadwell stated that some harmful effects of the oil spill have persisted.[8]

Treadwell helped establish the Siberia Alaska Gateway Project of the Alaska State Chamber of Commerce, which worked to open the US-Russia border with the Friendship Flight. He led two expeditions to Wrangel Island in 1990 and led a team of nuclear safety experts to the Bilibino Nuclear Power Plant in Chukotka in 1993. He hosted RADEX, the Arctic nations’ first circumpolar radiation release response exercise in 1994.

In 1990, incumbent one-term governor Steve Cowper decided not to seek re-election. Hickel decided to run as the nominee of the Alaskan Independence Party, and won with a plurality of 39% of the vote.[9] Hickel appointed Treadwell served as Deputy Commissioner of Alaska's Department of Environmental Conservation. He served in that position from 1991 to 1994 and continued to help the cleanup of the spill. He wrote new oil spill prevention laws,[10] and helped create the Department's Environmental Justice division.[11][12] He also represented the state of Alaska on U.S. delegations in three circumpolar government groups: the eight-nation Arctic Environmental Protection Strategy, the Arctic Council, and the regional Governors’ Northern Forum. He joined Governor Hickel at the United Nations Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in 1992.[13]

After Governor Hickel decided not to run for re-election in 1994, Treadwell served as a board member on the Alaska Science and Technology Foundation.[14] He is a member of the Alaska Siberia Research Center board. Treadwell was elected a Fellow National of the Explorers Club in 2002 and chairs the North Pacific Alaska Chapter of the Club.

Business careerEdit

Treadwell has been involved in numerous successful business ventures and is a prominent member of Alaska's business community. Treadwell is on the Board of Venture Ad Astra, which creates "remote sensing and location-based technologies for National Security, Position, Timing, Navigational Infrastructure, and Commercial Markets".[15] Treadwell played a role in the foundation of Digimarc, a digital watermarking technology provider ranked first on Forbes list of fastest growing tech companies in 2004.[16][17] He has also served as non-executive Chairman of Immersive Media Corporation (IMC), a company notable for developing the camera used for Google's Street View and Map Quest's 360 View services.[16][18]

Arctic Research CommissionEdit

Treadwell was appointed to the United States Arctic Research Commission in 2001, and was appointed by President George W. Bush to Chair in 2006. He has been called to testify before the United States Congress on several occasions.[2][19] In 2008 and 2009, Treadwell testified to Congress regarding his concerns about anthropogenic global warming, but when running for Lt. Governor in 2010, said he did not believe carbon dioxide emissions were a significant problem.[20][21][22] On August 20, 2009, he was called before the Homeland Security Subcommittee of the Senate Committee on Appropriations, when it made a field trip to Alaska. During his testimony Treadwell warned that the recently announced moratorium on commercial fishing of the Beaufort Sea would fail if it were not matched by similar moratoriums by Canada and Russia.[2]

During this time, he also served as Senior Fellow of the Institute of the North, founded by Hickel, which was a part of the Alaska Pacific University. He served as the Institute’s first full-time Managing Director and Adjunct Professor of Business . Treadwell also did research at the Institute. He focused on strategic, defense, management, transportation, and telecommunications of Alaska. He is a co-author of Missile Defense, the Space Relationship, and the Twenty-First Century as well as lead author of Why the Arctic Matters, a Commonwealth North 2009 study.[23]

In 2008 Treadwell served as a delegate for Alaska in the 2008 Republican National Convention and served early on as co-chair of Mitt Romney's 2008 Presidential campaign in Alaska.[24]

Lieutenant governor of AlaskaEdit

Treadwell in Barrow in July 2012, touring facilities during the U.S. Coast Guard's Arctic Shield exercise.

In May 2010, Treadwell announced his intent to run for Lt. Governor of Alaska. He gave his primary reasons for running as frustration with an overbearing federal government, concern for the flagging Trans-Alaska Pipeline, and a need to diversify Alaska's economy through international trade. Treadwell won the August 24, 2010 Republican primary election with approximately 53% of the vote, a margin of more than 22% over his closest opponent, state Representative Jay Ramras. Following his primary campaign victory, Treadwell's campaign joined with that of incumbent Republican Governor Sean Parnell.[25]

In the general election in November 2010, Parnell and Treadwell faced the Democratic ticket of Ethan Berkowitz and Diane E. Benson, as well as slates from the state's other two recognized parties, the Alaskan Independence and Libertarian parties. Parnell and Treadwell defeated their Democratic opponents by a margin of approximately 59 to 38 percent, with the other two candidates receiving the remaining 3 percent.[26] Treadwell was sworn in as the Lieutenant Governor of Alaska on December 6, 2010.

2014 U.S. Senate electionEdit

Treadwell announced on December 1, 2012 at a Republican luncheon in Fairbanks, Alaska that he was forming an exploratory committee to seek the GOP nomination to challenge one-term incumbent Sen. Mark Begich.[27]

Treadwell filed for the U.S. Senate primary race on June 18, 2013, and officially held his campaign launch on September 12, 2013. Other candidates for the nomination included Joe Miller and Dan Sullivan.[28]

On August 19, 2014, Sullivan won the primary with 40%, having vastly outspent Miller (32%) and Treadwell (25%) combined.[29]

2018 Alaska gubernatorial Republican primaryEdit

Treadwell on the night of the primary

On June 1, 2018, the last day to file for candidacy Mead announced would run for Governor of Alaska in 2018. He lost the party's nomination to Mike Dunleavy.

2018 Alaska Gubernatorial Republican Primary
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Michael J. Dunleavy 39,193 61.79
Republican Mead Treadwell 20,230 31.89
Republican Michael D. Sheldon 1,408 2.22
Republican Merica Hlatcu 957 1.51
Republican Thomas A. Gordon 849 1.34
Republican Gerald L. Heikes 432 0.68
Republican Darin A. Colbry 363 0.57

Personal lifeEdit

Treadwell and his wife, Carol, had three children, two sons, Tim, Will, and a daughter, Natalie. Carol Treadwell died in 2002 of cancer. He is active in the Catholic Church.[30]


  • Roberts, Malcolm B., ed. (1990). Going Up In Flames. (Treadwell with numerous collaborators including Robert B. Atwood, Walter J. Hickel and Irene Ryan; authorship credited to the Commonwealth North Federal-State Relations Committee). Anchorage: Alaska Pacific University Press for Commonwealth North. ISBN 0-935094-15-6. 132 pp.


  1. ^ Treadwell, Mead (June 24, 2008). "s America Prepared For An Accessible Arctic?". United States Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation. Retrieved April 1, 2020.
  2. ^ a b c Mead Treadwell (2009-08-20). "U.S. strategic interests in the age of an accessible Arctic … what we need to know and do now". United States Senate. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2009-09-15.
  3. ^ O'Malley, Julia (December 14, 2012). "Lt. Gov. Treadwell stunned by killings at his childhood school". Anchorage Daily News. Anchorage. Archived from the original on January 19, 2013. Retrieved January 7, 2013.
  4. ^ Balingit, Moriah (December 16, 2012). "Alaska's Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell, native of Newtown: Better mental health system needed". Retrieved January 7, 2013.
  5. ^ a b "Lt. Governor Mead Treadwell Governor, American Polar Society". Retrieved January 7, 2013.
  6. ^ "PRIVATE INVESTMENT IN THE ARCTIC Mead Treadwell, Lieutenant Governor, State of Alaska". Archived from the original on March 4, 2012. Retrieved January 7, 2013.
  7. ^ a b "Restoration at Valdez". Spartanburg Herald-Journal. Spartanburg. September 13, 1990. Retrieved June 18, 2013.
  8. ^ "Valdez: The Damage Persists, 17 Years Later". April 15, 2006. Retrieved January 7, 2013.
  9. ^
  10. ^ Postman, David (February 2, 1991). "DEC chief disavows regulation preview". Anchorage Daily News. Retrieved June 18, 2013.
  11. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2007-06-07. Retrieved 2013-06-18.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  12. ^ "Mead Treadwell to run for lieutenant governor". May 7, 2010. Retrieved January 7, 2013.
  13. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-02-14. Retrieved 2013-06-18.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  14. ^ "Lt. Governor Mead Treadwell". The Aerospace States Association. Archived from the original on May 21, 2013. Retrieved January 7, 2013.
  15. ^ Venture Ad Astra, About
  16. ^ a b US Arctic Research Commission; People; Former Commissioners "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-02-14. Retrieved 2013-06-18.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  17. ^ Yen, Jody (January 30, 2004). "The 25 Fastest-Growing Technology Companies". Forbes.
  18. ^ The American Polar Society: Lt. Governor Mead Treadwell
  19. ^ Mead Treadwell (2006-09-26). "Testimony by Mead Treadwell, Chair U.S. Arctic Research Commission" (PDF). U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation and the Committee on Foreign Relations. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2009-08-12. Retrieved 2009-09-12.
  20. ^ Candidate Profile: Treadwell's underdog run for U.S. Senate draws on 40 years of Alaska work, Anchorage Daily News, Lisa Demer, June 21, 2014. Retrieved 11 August 2014.
  21. ^ Mead Treadwell (2009-03-25). "Climate Change and the Arctic: New Frontiers of National Security" (PDF). House Committee on Foreign Affairs. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2009-08-12. Retrieved 2009-09-15.
  22. ^ Mead Treadwell (2009-06-24). "Testimony by Mead Treadwell, Chair U.S. Arctic Research Commission: "Is America Prepared For An Accessible Arctic?"" (PDF). Senate Commerce Committee. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2009-08-12. Retrieved 2009-09-15.
  23. ^ "Official biography: Mead Treadwell". U.S. Arctic Research Commission. Archived from the original on 2009-09-15.
  24. ^ "Treadwell to run for lieutenant governor". May 7, 2010. Archived from the original on May 17, 2013. Retrieved January 7, 2013.
  25. ^ State of Alaska 2010 Primary Election: August 24, 2010 Official Results,
  26. ^ Election Night 2010: Incumbents Parnell and Young Re-Elected, Possibly Murkowski APRN 3-10-2010
  27. ^ "Alaska: Treadwell One Step Closer to Senate Bid". Roll Call. December 3, 2012. Retrieved December 3, 2012.
  28. ^ "Sullivan resigning as natural resources commissioner amid talk of US Senate bid". Anchorage Daily News. 12 September 2012. Archived from the original on 14 September 2013.
  29. ^ 'Sullivan declares victory in high-stakes GOP Senate primary', Alaska Dispatch News, Dermot Cole, August 20, 2014. Retrieved 22 August 2014.
  30. ^ Mead Treadwell official campaign biography "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2010-12-10. Retrieved 2011-01-24.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)

External linksEdit

Political offices
Preceded by
Craig Campbell
Lieutenant Governor of Alaska
Succeeded by
Byron Mallott
Party political offices
Preceded by
Sean Parnell
Republican nominee for
Lieutenant Governor of Alaska

Succeeded by
Dan Sullivan