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Governor Parnell Names John Coghill to Senate Seat

October 8, 2009, Fairbanks, Alaska - Governor Sean Parnell today named Representative John Coghill as his appointment to replace Gene Therriault as the state senator from District F, which stretches from North Pole to Valdez.

"Representative Coghill's long-standing commitment to public service and legislative experience make him respected on both sides of the aisle," Governor Parnell said. "He knows his district well and interacts with his constituency daily. I am pleased he will continue to serve Alaska in his new post."

A third-generation Alaskan, Coghill was born in Fairbanks and raised in Nenana. He was first elected to the Alaska House of Representatives in 1998 and has served as both majority leader and chairman of the House Rules Committee, his current position.

Coghill is a small-business owner and is active in jail ministries and family counseling. He and his wife, Luann, have three grown children.

His father, John B. "Jack" Coghill, is a former lieutenant governor of Alaska who served from 1990-1994 under Governor Wally Hickel. The senior Coghill also is one of the signatories of the Alaska Constitution.

John Coghill must be confirmed by a simple majority of Senate Republicans. His appointment to the Senate leaves a vacancy in the House. Governor Parnell has 30 days from the date of Coghill's resignation from the House to fill that seat.

Parnell lauded the rigorous, open process the District F Republicans utilized in selecting three qualified individuals for his consideration.

Gene Therriault resigned the Senate seat in September to become the Parnell administration's senior policy advisor for Alaska energy.

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