Rep. Ben Carpenter
Alaska House of Representatives, District 8

About Us

Ben Carpenter

Ben has called Alaska home for more than 35 years. Born in apple orchard country in eastern Washington State, Ben moved to Alaska with his family in 1985. Raised in an oil field family in Nikiski, near the birthplace of the oil industry in Alaska, he graduated from high school in 1993.

Ben served 13 years on active duty with the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Army participating in six deployments to the Middle East. Ben also spent time in the Reserves where he earned a bachelor’s degree and was commissioned into the active Army as an Armor Officer. He retired from the Alaska Army National Guard in 2018 with more than 21 years of military service.

Upon departing the active-duty Army in 2013, Ben led his family in establishing a commercial peony farm and is a founding member and current President of the Alaska Peony Market Cooperative, a local farm co-op specializing in marketing beautiful Alaska peonies.Ben is married to the former Ameye Mazurek and they celebrated their 25th anniversary in 2020. They are proud parents to two adult children successfully navigating their way in this world, and two teenagers eager to join their siblings. God has blessed Ben and Ameye with three delightful grandchildren.

Ben is honored to represent the people living on the northern Kenai Peninsula in the Alaska House of Representatives (District 8). He was first elected in 2018 where he continues to serve on the Finance Committee. Ben champions fiscally conservative spending policies and a long-term vision for a healthy Alaskan economy, protection of individual liberties, and a return of respect in the legislature through increased trust and transparency amongst legislators.

Richard W. Best

Richard W. Best currently serves as Chief of Staff and Finance Aid to Representative Ben Carpenter, having done so since 2018.

Before joining the legislative team, Richard completed a 25-year career in the oil and gas / construction industry where he “bootstrapped” himself into a multidiscipline field engineer position. Richard worked on iconic projects such as the $1.3 billion Alpine project, the Trans Alaska Pipeline System, and numerous public infrastructure projects all over Alaska

Richard continues service to his local community as Palmer City Councilman having done so for 12 years, four of which as Deputy Mayor. Richard previously served on the Palmer City Planning and Zoning commission, the Airport Advisory Board, and the Board of Economic Development.

Richard’s ties to the northern Kenai Peninsula began in his childhood as he grew up in Nikiski and graduated from Kenai Central High School. Richard is a life-long Alaskan, steeped in the homestead can-do-Alaska attitude. Richard and his wife Vonda, a middle school teacher in the Mat-Su Valley, have two daughters.


Kendra was born and raised in Nikiski, Alaska. She is number nine out of ten children in her family. Her maternal grandparents moved from Michigan to homestead in Nikiski during the 1950’s and her paternal grandparents came up in the 1970’s to help build the Tesoro refinery.

Some of Kendra’s hobbies include: four wheeling/snow machining, hiking, walking on the beach, spending time with her many nieces and nephews, and attending community/political meetings.

Kendra loves to work for her district and to help those neighbors who call into the office with questions or issues. She is grateful for the opportunity to be part of the legislative team and to increase her knowledge of state government.