Press Release

Dean Guaneli Named State Prosecutor of the Year

30-year veteran a pillar of Alaska criminal law

May 20, 2005

(Anchorage) – A committee of his peers awarded Chief Assistant Attorney General Dean Guaneli Prosecutor of the Year for 2005 at the Annual Alaska District Attorneys' Training Conference last week.

"Dean's service to the department transcends the scope of this award," said Susan Parkes, Deputy Attorney General for the department's criminal division. "It should read `lifetime achievement award' because Dean has devoted most of his professional life to this department."

"Every good manager attributes the success of his organization to the exceptional people working on his or her team," said Attorney General David Márquez. "When I look at the Department of Law's success in meeting its mandate of protecting Alaskans, I can think of no better person to have on my side."

Guaneli started with the Department of Law in 1976. He is an experienced trial attorney, currently oversees the Office of Special Prosecutions and Appeals (OSPA) and represents the Department of Public Safety. Guaneli was instrumental in drafting Governor Murkowski's omnibus crime legislation enacted last year and rewriting Alaska's felony sentencing laws which Governor Murkowski signed into law this March. This rewrite became necessary when the U.S. Supreme Court issued a decision in Blakely v. Washinton last year that invalidated the criminal sentencing statutes in a number of states, including Alaska.

The federally funded District Attorneys' conference, held annually, updates professionals in the criminal division on recent case law and statutes, trial techniques and appellate concerns. Collegial conversations during breaks allow less experienced prosecutors and paralegals to get valuable tips from veterans. "The conference is a very efficient way the keep the team at the top of its game," said Parkes.

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