Chris Dimond of Douglas is seen in an undated photo. (Courtesy photo)

Chris Dimond of Douglas is seen in an undated photo. (Courtesy photo)

Great-grandson of territorial Congressman seeks election to Alaska House

With incumbent Rep. Sam Kito III still undecided on re-election, a second person has announced their intention to seek the statehouse seat representing Haines, Skagway, Gustavus and downtown Juneau.

On Friday, Douglas resident Chris Dimond filed a letter of intent with the Alaska Public Offices Commission. The letter allows him to raise money for the fall 2018 election season.

By phone Monday, the Empire asked Dimond why he decided to run.

“Well, like all Alaskan parents, I want to leave the next generation of Alaskans — which includes my children — with a healthy, robust state. That’s going to require leadership,” he said. “This district knows, as well as all Alaskans … that we have to pull together to get stuff done, and I can fill that role of leadership. I want to fill that role of leadership.”

Dimond is a fourth-generation Alaskan. His great-grandfather, Anthony Dimond, was Alaska’s territorial representative to Congress from 1933 to 1945, then became a federal district court judge in the territory.

His grandfather, John Dimond, was a Juneau pioneer who helped build the Shrine of St. Therese, became a decorated WWII veteran, then served on the first Alaska Supreme Court.

Dimond himself has never run for political office. He’s a registered undeclared voter, according to the records of the Alaska Division of Elections, and he said he intends to run as an independent in the November general election.

“I’ve never run for any office before, but the beauty of our government is that it’s a citizen legislature,” Dimond said.

While an ongoing legal battle may allow independents to run in the Democratic primary this year, Dimond said he will not pursue that option if it comes available.

“I’m going to do this as a truly independent, undeclared candidate,” he said, and characterized himself as an “Egan Democrat.”

“If I were to join a party, it would be a Democratic party,” he said.

State House District 33 is one of the most Democratic districts in Alaska, one of only a handful that have more registered Democrats than Republicans.

While the seat is currently held by Kito, the incumbent has not made up his mind about running for re-election this year.

A Douglas woman, Sara Hannan, announced her intention earlier this month to run for the seat. Hannan is a registered Democrat and said Monday that she believes “the purest form of democracy is only benefitted by more candidates.”

Dimond, who was born in Juneau and graduated in 1993 from Juneau-Douglas High School, said he doesn’t believe he’s ever crossed paths with Hannan, though both live on Douglas Island.

After graduating from JDHS, Dimond said he attended trade school and ventured Outside for several years before returning to Juneau.

In 2012, he married Nona Hamilton-Head (now Nona Dimond), a staffer to Sen. Gary Stevens, R-Kodiak. Stevens officiated their wedding, and the couple now have three children.

Dimond has worked for North Pacific Erectors on jobs across Southeast Alaska, including the re-roofing of the Treadwell Pump House. He now is an organizer for Local 1281 of the carpenters’ union.

“As an organizer for PNWCC, a large part of my job has been representing my fellow carpenters,” Dimond wrote by text message. “As my career has advanced, this has often included interacting with, and giving testimony to, the Alaska State Legislature. I feel that my previous work experiences and political dealings make me the best candidate to represent our district. I am also aware that a big part of what makes for good leadership are the people you surround yourself with. Not to mention, my entire career and life have revolved around on-the-job training.”

• Contact reporter James Brooks at or call 523-2258.

More in News

(Juneau Empire file photo)
Aurora forecast for the week of Feb. 26

These forecasts are courtesy of the University of Alaska Fairbanks’ Geophysical Institute… Continue reading

U.S. Rep. Mary Peltola (center) walks with Alaska Rep. Will Stapp, R-Fairbanks, and Alaska Sen. Lyman Hoffman, D-Bethel, into the Alaska House of Representatives chambers ahead of her annual address to the Alaska Legislature on Monday. (Mark Sabbatini/Juneau Empire)
Peltola celebrates federal intervention in Albertsons, Kroger merger in legislative address

Congresswoman says wins for Alaska’s fisheries and state’s economy occurring through collaboration.

Sen. Shelley Hughes, R-Palmer, speaks in support of Senate concurrence on a version of an education bill passed by the Alaska House last week during a Senate floor discussion on Monday. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Senate concurs on House education bill, Dunleavy is skeptical

Dunleavy schedules press conference Tuesday afternoon in Anchorage to discuss the legislation.

A photo by Ben Huff being exhibited as part of his presentation at 6:30 p.m. at the Alaska State Museum. (Photo courtesy of the Alaska State Museum)
Here’s what’s happening for First Friday in March

Both the state and city museums are celebrating 20 years of artistic… Continue reading

Goose Creek Correctional Center is seen in fall. (Photo courtesy of Alaska Department of Corrections)
Alaska prison failed to provide adequate dental care to inmates, state investigator finds

Goose Creek Correctional Center has gone years without a hygienist, forcing patients to wait

Jirdes Winther Baxter chats with Wayne Bertholl during her 100th birthday celebration Saturday at the Juneau Yacht Club. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)
Jirdes Winther Baxter, last survivor of 1925 Nome serum run, celebrates 100th birthday in Juneau

Five generations of family, dozens of friends and a coalition of political leaders offer tributes.

The Safeway supermarket in Juneau, seen here Oct. 4, 2023, is among those in Alaska that might be sold if its parent company, Albertsons Companies Inc., merges with Kroger Co., the parent company of Fred Meyer. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire file photo)
US sues to block merger of grocery giants Kroger and Albertsons, saying it could push prices higher

Eight states, not including Alaska, join lawsuit against parent companies of Fred Meyer and Safeway.

(Michael Penn / Juneau Empire file photo)
Police calls for Saturday, Feb. 24, 2024

This report contains public information from law enforcement and public safety agencies.

(Michael Penn / Juneau Empire file photo)
Police calls for Friday, Feb. 23, 2024

This report contains public information from law enforcement and public safety agencies.

Most Read