Dr. Ruth Uy Asmundson
Former Mayor, City of Davis
2006-2010, Mayor Pro Tem, subsequently as Mayor
2002-2006, Mayor Pro Tem, subsequently as Mayor

Dr. Ruth Uy Asmundson is a political moderate who served as Mayor of the City of Davis until June 2010. She was first elected to the City Council in 2002 and then reelected in 2006. She served as Mayor Pro Tem from 2006 to 2008.

Dr. Asmundson was born in the Philippines and graduated with a BS in chemistry from Adamson University in Manila. She went on to become a Fulbright Scholar in the US, earning an MS degree in chemistry from Wilkes University in Pennsylvania. She was later awarded a PhD in Agricultural Chemistry from UCD in 1972, again as a Fulbright Scholar.

Ruth Asmundson is the widow of Vigfus A. Asmundson, former Mayor of Davis and son of the UC Davis professor for whom Asmundson Hall is named — theirs is the only recorded instance in which both husband and wife have held the mayoral seat in Davis. Dr. Asmundson married Vigfus A. Asmundson during his term as city mayor, and has lived in Davis since at least 1973. She has six children, all college graduates: Alinia, Irena, Wilfred, Vigdis, Jonas and Sigrid.

She was named the Davis Citizen of the Year in 1989. Dr. Ruth Asmundson first served on the school board in Davis in 1990 when she was selected to fill the remainder of Susie Boyd's term when she was elected to the Davis City Council that year. Asmundson was a school board trustee until 2001. She is one of three people to serve two terms as Davis' Mayor.

News Mentions

Mosquito Spraying

Asmundson showed questionable leadership during the Aug. 23 city meeting about spraying for West Nile Virus when angry citizens overthrew the meeting because the format - people write questions and the mayor chooses which ones get read - was too strict. Asmundson left and ordered the panel of experts to leave because she didn't like being shouted at. Asmundson later said that there wouldn't be anymore meetings because this one had left her feeling "embarrassed and disillusioned and frustrated".


Ruth did not endorse anyone for the February 2008 Primary Election, but was supportive of the Democratic Party.


McEwing, Shearon, 14 Oct. 1991, "For Asmundson, service to schools runs deep," Davis Enterprise, pg. A1.


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  • I've seen more grace under fire from the 2004-2005 ASUCD Elections Committee than the impression the Sac Bee article gave of Asmundson. Welcome to real politics. —BrentLaabs
  • That's it! I am leaving this town. I am literally moving from Davis tomorrow (no joke) and I am glad! I think reading about an event like this only reaffirms my desire to leave the People's Republic of Davis. If the mayor doesn't have the ability to hold a meeting regarding my safety, i think i will live somewhere in Sacramento county. were a great place because I made many life long friends...but the politics of this place with its history of toad tunnel/hurt feelings mayors makes it the laughing stock of the nation. Thank you Mayor Asmundson for being a “great” leader when it actually counts. I really hope that Yolo County will be ok from West Nile...because if something happens, I think we all know who to blame....the paranoid hippies of this community and the politicans who can't hold meetings! is some advice; running for political office is great, but never take the duty of public service lightly. If you melt under pressure, PLEASE don’t be a leader ...for the sake of our health...literally! — GeorgejAndrews

2005-11-03 06:31:10   was she first asian ever to be elected, or just the first one in the 90s? If the latter, what an asian town we live in. —ApolloStumpy

2006-03-18 03:42:38   Asmundson is "comfortable with the procedure we followed" in Buzayan case. I think anybody who takes a good look at it will see that she is very wrong to be comfortable with the procedure the police followed here. Phil and I have both written to her in protest of her support for this obvious misconduct and I hope a lot of other citizens will too. —KenjiYamada

2006-03-18 17:20:39   She has been known to hate 16 year-old girls and civil rights. JamesSchwab

2006-05-10 12:12:15   Ruth has been endorsed by the Davis Police Officers AssociationJamesSchwab

Huh! I wonder why... -KJM

We need to be Ruthless!!! — WilyFerret

2010-01-29 20:57:22   Get well soon! —BrentLaabs