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The umiak, umialak, umiaq, umiac, oomiac or oomiak is a type of boat used by both Yupik and Inuit,...




Ground Zero for Climate Change Scientists converge on the northernmost city in the United States t...

Blanket Toss

The blanket toss is now conducted as entertainment, but it didn't originate that way. The Inupiaq ...

Wild Life

Among the most spectacular visitors to the area are the giant snowy owls. The Inupiat name for Bar...

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City Mayor, Robert Harcharek

City Mayor, Robert HarcharekBob Harcharek has lived and worked on the North Slope for more than 30 years. He earned a Ph.D. in International and Development Education from the University of Pittsburgh in 1977. He served as a member of the Barrow City Council for fifteen years since 1993 and is currently the Mayor and Chief Administrative Officer for the City of Barrow.

Dr. Harcharek recently retired from the North Slope Borough (NSB) as the Community and Capital Improvement Projects (CIP) Planner for the Department of Public Works. In his twenty-four years of employment with the NSB, he has served as Senior Planner and Social Science Researcher, CIP and Economic Development Planner, Community Affairs Coordinator for the NSB Department of Public Safety, Director of the North Slope Higher Education Center (now known as Ilisagvik College), and Socio-cultural Scientist for the NSB Department of Wildlife Management. Prior to that, he served as Director of Technical Assistance for Upkeagvik Inupiat Corporation, and Dean of the Inupiat University of the Arctic.

Bob served for 3 1/2 years as a Peace Corps volunteer in Thailand and was also a Fulbright-Hays Professor of Multicultural Development in Thailand. He has served as a member of numerous boards of directors, including the North Slope Borough Board of Education, the Alaska Association of School Boards, the Alaska School Activities Association and the Northern Justice Society. Mayor Bob currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Alaska Muncipal League.

When not playing with his grandchildren, Bob spends most of his spare time growing decirative plants and vegetables in his office and home and working with the youth of our community, particularly coaching wrestling.  Bob has been a volunteer assistant wrestling coach for the Barrow High School for the past fourteen years.

Bob Harcharek was appointed to the State of Alaska Local Boundary Commission from the State’s Second Judicial District on July 18, 2002 by then-Governor Knowles and was reappointed by Governor Murkowski. In March 2008, Governor Palin reappointed him to the LBC. He then became the senior and longest serving member on the Commission. Upon the expiration of that term, Gov. Sean Parnell subsequently appointed Mayor Harcharek another term. His current term on the LBC ends January 31, 2014.