The first female mayor of St. Louis, and the city’s first new mayor in 16 years was officially sworn in Tuesday afternoon at City Hall.
It's the beginning of a new era in St. Louis, and hundreds filled City Hall to witness this historic day to witness the first female mayor of St. Louis. It was an afternoon of both celebration and solemnity, as the new Mayor Lyda Krewson recognized all the work that needs to be done.
"I have a great team and great aspirations for our city,” she said in her inaugural address, which also highlighted St. Louis's strengths: “We've had a lot of success over the last 10 or 20 years: Cherokee Street, the Grove, the Loop, Old North, Hyde Park, Macklind Avenue, South Grand."
She talked about the challenges facing the city, from crime and poverty to an underpaid police force, and what she plans to tackle first.
"Over the last year, I have spoken often about neighborhood safety. We must find the will and the resources for summer jobs and more recreation programs. We must also find a way to a more competitively paid, staffed and trained police department,” she explained.
In his first interview as a private citizen again, Former Mayor Francis Slay told 5 On Your Side, "You've got to put the job above everything, in order to do it right. And I know she will."
Krewson was joined on stage by her family, along with several former St. Louis mayors and other area leaders, who vowed to work alongside the new mayor to ensure continued progress. St. Louis County Executive Steve Stenger explained, "We've already worked together on a key issue, which is Metrolink security, and I think we have a very productive working relationship.”
Kansas City Mayor Sly James introduced Krewson before she took the oath of office. He also looks forward to working with the new mayor of St. Louis: “It's an opportunity for us to talk about what we can do together, and how we can do things together. How important it is for us to collaborate, as opposed to sitting on two sides of the state and not collaborate as deeply."
Krewson also mentioned urgent concerns about losing federal and state funding for key city programs. She says if those funds disappear, progress won't be easy.