Eben Hopson
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Eben Hopson
Eben Hopson
Eben Hopson.jpg
Personal details
Born(1922-11-07)November 7, 1922
Utqiavik, Alaska, U.S.
DiedJune 28, 1980(1980-06-28) (aged 57)
Utqiagvik, Alaska, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)Rebecca Panigeo
ParentsAl Hopson

Eben Nanauq Hopson (November 7, 1922 - June 28, 1980) was an American politician in the state of Alaska. An Iñupiaq, he was born and raised in Utqia?vik, Alaska (at the time known as Barrow, Alaska) and was a heavy equipment operator.[1] Hopson served in Alaska Territorial Legislature from 1957 to 1959 as well as the Alaska Senate upon statehood, representing District O from 1959 to 1967.[2][3] He died from cancer in 1980 in Utqia?vik, Alaska.[4]

Early Life

Hopson was the first person to be born in the Presbyterian mission hospital in Utqia?vik in 1922.[5]

Political Career

Hopson served as the first mayor of Utqia?vik, then known as Barrow. He was first elected to the position in 1972, and was subsequently reelected in 1975.

In 1977, Hopson founded the Inuit Circumpolar Council, an organization dedicated for the unification of Inuit voices throughout Alaska, Canada, and Greenland.[6] The conference formally recognized Hopson as their founder in 1980.[7]

In 1979, Hopson represented the Inuit people in a court case suing the US Secretary of Commerce Juanita Kreps on the grounds that the International Whaling Commission had no standing to regulate subsistence whaling for native peoples.[8] The case was initially ruled against Hopson by the Alaska district court, but was subsequently overturned in 1980 by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Death and Legacy

Hopson was hospitalized in Utqia?vik on June 16th passed away on June 28th, 1980. He was survived by his wife Rebecca and 12 children.[9] Inuit Day, a celebration of the Inuit culture, has occurred on November 7th since 2006, in honor of Hopson's legacy.[10]

The middle school serving Utqia?vik is named after Hopson.


  1. ^ "Who's Who in Alaskan Politics: A Biographical Dictionary of Alaskan ... - Evangeline Atwood, R. N. DeArmond - Google Books". Books.google.ca. 2008-09-24. Retrieved .
  2. ^ "Historical Dictionary of the Inuit - Pamela R. Stern - Google Books". Books.google.ca. 2013-09-26. Retrieved .
  3. ^ "The Arctic Coastal Zone Management Newsletter - Google Books". Books.google.ca. 2007-12-28. Retrieved .
  4. ^ "The Polar Times - Google Books". Books.google.ca. Retrieved .
  5. ^ Turner, Wallace (June 20, 1983). "Eskimos Use Oil Taxes to Modernize". New York Times. Retrieved 2019.
  6. ^ "INUIT - THE ARCTIC WE WANT". North Slope. Retrieved 2019.
  7. ^ Arctic Research and Policy Act of 1983.
  8. ^ Reeves, Meg (30 November 1979). "The Bowhead Whale Controversy: A Crisis for U.S. Whale Policy". Ocean Law Memo (16). Retrieved 2019.
  9. ^ "A Short Biography of the Honorable Eben Hopson". Retrieved 2019.
  10. ^ Oliver, Shady Grove (11 November 2016). "Arctic residents celebrate Inuit Day". Arctic Sounder. Retrieved 2019.

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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