Bill Sheffield
William Jennings Sheffield, Jr. (born June 26, 1928) is an American
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 Democratic politician
A politician, political leader, or political figure is an individual who is involved in influencing public policy and decision making...

 who was the fifth Governor of Alaska
Alaska is the largest state in the United States by area. It is situated in the northwest extremity of the North American continent, with Canada to the east, the Arctic Ocean to the north, and the Pacific Ocean to the west and south, with Russia further west across the Bering Strait...

 from 1982 to 1986. Sheffield's term in the governor's mansion was marked by controversy including attempts to have him impeached.

While governor, Sheffield pushed an unpopular bill through the state legislature to consolidate Alaska's time zones. Prior to the passage of this bill, Alaska was spread over four time zones (Pacific, Yukon, Alaska-Hawaii, and Bering). Sheffield's bill placed virtually the entire state (with the sole exception of the Aleutians, starting just west of Dutch Harbor) into the Yukon Time Zone (which was then renamed the Alaska Time Zone). Initially, this was poorly received; those in the panhandle
Alaska Panhandle
Southeast Alaska, sometimes referred to as the Alaska Panhandle, is the southeastern portion of the U.S. state of Alaska, which lies west of the northern half of the Canadian province of British Columbia. The majority of Southeast Alaska's area is part of the Tongass National Forest, the United...

 lost their sense of unity with the west coast of the United States, and those in the heartland of the state were placed, in effect, in a perpetual daylight savings time. More than twenty years later, the state legislature was still debating the issue, with some members wanting to return the panhandle and capital to Seattle time, and with others claiming that Sheffield broke his promise to revisit the change after a one-year trial period.

After leaving the position of Governor, Sheffield served as Chairman of the Board of Directors for Alaska Railroad
Alaska Railroad
The Alaska Railroad is a Class II railroad which extends from Seward and Whittier, in the south of the state of Alaska, in the United States, to Fairbanks , and beyond to Eielson Air Force Base and Fort Wainwright in the interior of that state...

from 1985 to 1997. In 1997 he was promoted to President and CEO of the railroad, where he served until 2001. As of 2008, he remains on the railroad's Board of Directors as Vice Chairman.
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