The Knoxville Focus for October 5, 2015

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Congratulations Mayor Rogero!

By Steve Hunley

 

Knoxville Mayor Madeline Rogero made history by becoming the first woman to be elected to serve as the city’s chief executive.  In fact, Madeline Rogero was the first woman ever to be elected as mayor of one of Tennessee’s four big cities.  Nashville has just elected their first female mayor, Megan Barry.

Madeline Rogero had run a close race  against now-governor Bill Haslam.  Haslam won the race, although just barely, despite having vastly outspent Rogero.  The race was so close Rogero actually won the vote on Election Day; Bill Haslam won by winning early voting.

To his credit, Mayor Haslam later brought Madeline Rogero into his administration, where she did an excellent job.  As Haslam was running for governor, Madeline Rogero ran to succeed him.  Rogero put together an impressive coalition of Democrats, Republicans and Independents.  Former City Councilman Ivan Harmon sought to run as the “Republican candidate” in a race that was nonpartisan.  Harmon did not make the runoff election where Rogero faced newcomer Mark Padgett, also a Democrat.  Much of the business-types and Chamber of Commerce crowd, still sore about Rogero’s having challenged Bill Haslam in the first place, funneled an astonishing amount of money to Padgett’s campaign.  It was wasted, as Madeline Rogero won a decisive victory.

During her first four years in office, Madeline Rogero has presided over a largely compatible City Council and she has worked well with her city council members.  Mayor Rogero has quietly accomplished a lot during her first term and Knoxville has been free of turmoil and strife.

Madeline Rogero has demonstrated the ability to bring people together and work hard for Knoxville.  Reelected with a virtually unanimous vote, Madeline Rogero earned it.

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