Deputy Commissioner of Labor David Stone dies unexpectedly

Members of Juneau’s Borough Assembly learned last night of the unexpected passing of a recent colleague. Former Deputy Mayor David G. Stone was praised for his years of public service, and for his kindness and helpfulness.

Stone, who left the Assembly in October, was deputy commissioner of the state’s Department of Labor and Workforce Development.

Stone was elected first in 2003, and assembly members said he served as a beacon for incoming members. He was termed-out after three consecutive terms on the Assembly from District 1.

“He was so good to me when I was going to run,” said Assemblymember Mary Becker, who learned of Stone’s passing during a charity board meeting. “It’s an extremely big shock, just a devastating thing,” Becker said.

She said Stone volunteered to teach her all about the city budget.

City Manager Kim Kiefer notified members of the Assembly last night and the Governor’s Office.

Assemblymember Jesse Kiehl said he was saddened by the news, saying Stone was, “Effective, nice... it’s a real loss.”

Mayor Merrill Sanford, who was at the hospital with Stone’s family, said Stone collapsed at home around 5 p.m. after saying he was not feeling well. Sanford said Stone was pronounced dead at the hospital.

His last Assembly meeting was Oct. 14. At that meeting he praised his fellow assembly members, and called City Clerk Laurie Sica, who oversaw that month’s municipal election, “the best city clerk in the state of Alaska.”

Loren Jones now fills the District 1 seat.

Stone in October of 2011 was promoted to deputy commissioner of the Department of Labor and Workforce Development, a position he had previously held. Stone became Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell’s chief of staff. He left that position earlier in 2011 to return to the labor department in its assistant commissioner position, the No. 3 administrator in the department, before his promotion.

His state biography says he was raised in Juneau and received a bachelor of science in geology from the University of Alaska.

A historian who gave presentations on the history of mining, Stone co-authored the book “Hard Rock Gold,” which was about the vital mines that once fueled Juneau’s economy.

He is a past-president of the Alaska Miners Association and a trustee of the Alaska Miner’s Hall of Fame. Stone also served as president of AJT Mining Properties and vice president of Alaska Electric Light and Power Company, the biography says.

11/21/2012 - 7:16am