Why I Launched the #MobileMayor Initiative

The #MobileMayor unveils his new "mobile office" at City Hall.

The #MobileMayor unveils his new “mobile office” at City Hall.

Today, I have the great pleasure of launching the #MobileMayor Initiative, which will leverage technology. social media and other innovations to connnect the people of Seat Pleasant with the Office of the Mayor in an unprecedented manner.

In this new age of social media, elected officials must find creative and innovative ways to engage the citizens and residents of the community. We must become more accessible and meet more frequently with our constituents to better understand their challenges and the issues they face.

The #MobileMayor initiative came about as a result of the City Council evicting me from my physical office space in City Hall.  At the time of their decision, my team and I thought this to be a horrible and undemocratic move leading to some very serious questions for us to consider including:

How and where would I able to meet with the people of Seat Pleasant?
How would I be able to serve my constituents when I am literally unable to work in City Hall?

After careful consideration ideas begin to flow and EUREKA! I got it. If the people can’t come to City Hall to meet with the Mayor then the Mayor will go to the people whom ultimately he serves.  Therefore, the idea was that the Mayor would be Mobile and I have become the #MobileMayor.

However, being mobile has its challenges too. Where would we meet the people? Another idea came to mind and that was a tent. Yes, a simple popup tent that could go anywhere. To that end, I will travel throughout the city setting up my tent and table to meet directly with the people. Equipped with my laptop, iPad, cell phone these tools will help me to stay connected and deliver services better.

Also, the social media component will allow me to use Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and other social platforms to communicate with my constituents. Each of these platforms are used frequently by all segments of my community. We can instantly get messages out to people about upcoming meetings, hearings, events and other activities.

Yes, at first when the city council took their action against me it was an obtacle but I remained determined to transform it in an opportunity to serve the people.  This tragedy has become my triumph. Now more than before we will reach our constituents. We will work to level the playing field for all of our people. We will move forward and not look back. The barriers of brick and mortar have been replaced with an open tent — having room for all.

Therefore, look out for a sighting of the #MobileMayor near you.