Neal Shaw Blaisdell served as Mayor of Honolulu from 1955 to 1969 as a member of the Hawaii Republican Party. As chief executive of City and County of Honolulu, Hawaii, Blaisdell oversaw one of the largest construction booms in city and county history, working closely with Governor John A. Burns.Early lifeBlaisdell was born in Honolulu and had European and Hawaiian ancestry. His father was William Wallace Blaisdell II (who served as fire chief of Honolulu), and mother was Maliaka "Malie" Alaneao Merseberg. A maternal great-grandfather was John Adams Cummins. A paternal great-grandfather John Blaisdell (1812–1889) came from Maine to the Hawaiian Islands in 1849.Education and athleticsKnown as "Rusty", Blaisdell played basketball, football, and baseball at Saint Louis School. He attended Bucknell University in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania where he was quarterback of the school's football team, graduating in 1927. He received Bucknell's Alumni Award for Meritorious Achievement in 1968. Although Blaisdell also played both basketball and baseball, he was inducted into the Bucknell Athletic Hall of Fame in 1988 under the category of football. He was also a golfer who started his day with push ups. Blaisdell returned to Honolulu to become a teacher, high school coach and athletic director.