Frances Ulmer retired as Chancellor of the University of Alaska Anchorage in June 2011. Her previous positions at UAA include: Director of the Institute of Social and Economic Research and Professor of Public Policy.
Ulmer served Alaska in elective office for 18 years, as the mayor of Juneau, as a state representative and as Lieutenant Governor, where she became a nationally recognized leader in election reform. She also held a number of appointed positions including Director of Policy Development for the State of Alaska, managing diverse programs, including the Alaska Coastal Management Program. At the national level, Ulmer served as a member of the Federal Communications Commission's State and Local Advisory Committee, and the Federal Elections Commissions' State Advisory Committee, and on the North Pacific Anadromous Fish Commission.
In June of 2010, President Obama appointed her to the seven-member Commission on the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill Commission, and in April 2011 the President appointed her Chair of the U.S. Arctic Research Commission. Previous committee and board positions include chairing the National Academies of Sciences Voter Registration Task Force, the Aspen Institute's Climate Change Commission, the National Advisory Board of the Union of Concerned Scientists, and the Board of Trustees of the Alaska Nature Conservancy, among many others.
Ulmer holds a J.D. cum laude from the University of Wisconsin Law School.