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Joseph F. Ada

Gov. Joseph F. Ada

  • January 1, 1987 - January 1, 1995
  • Republican
  • December 3, 1943
  • Other
  • College of Guam; University of Portland
  • Married: Rosanna Santos; three children


JOSEPH F. ADA was born in Guam and attended the College of Guam for two years before entering the University of Portland, where he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in corporate finance in 1968. Back in Guam, he was appointed deputy director of the Department of Public Works in 1970. He served five terms with the Guam Legislature and was chosen by his colleagues to serve as speaker from 1975 to 1979. He was lieutenant governor from 1979 to 1982 and was elected Governor in 1987. He was the first governor of Guam to be re-elected to a consecutive term in office, after being re-elected in 1990.

Since by law governors can only serve two consecutive terms, Ada could not seek a third term in 1994. He left office in January 1995 at the age of 51 after serving the public for more than twenty-five years. Ada is the first person ever to have held the offices of senator, legislative speaker, lieutenant governor and governor of Guam.


Rogers, Robert F. Destiny’s Landfall: A History of Guam. Honolulu: University of Hawai`i Press, revised edition, 2011.

Guampedia, “Governor Joseph F. Ada,”  Accessed 21 June 2018.

Recent Guam Governors