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City News

Mayor's Minute: June

In my professional life, I have been guided by four leadership pillars: 1) Vision, 2) Organization, 3) Respect, and 4) Boldness.

As you know, the City Council recently passed the Elevate Tuscaloosa Plan. This bold vision provides the resources for our community to take on the challenges appearing over the horizon. History teaches us that having a vision is one thing, but implementing it is another, and Elevate Tuscaloosa is no different. In the months and years ahead, we will look to partner with community leaders as we seek to answer the significant questions that we have. A few examples of these questions are:

  • Do we need a conference center, and if yes, where it should be located? 
  • Which projects might be enhanced with stakeholder or private sector partnerships? 
  • Are there initiatives/projects that should have been in the original recommendation? 

Frankly, the vision was the easy part, but now we have to organize to take on this endeavor that is more than double the size and scope of tornado recovery. To that end, I have created the Elevate Tuscaloosa Advisory Council which has 30 members and two co-chairs. The members were selected based on their expertise, community experience, and/or being an impacted stakeholder. 

The Advisory Council has three sub-committees: 1) Cultural Arts and Tourism, 2) Connectivity, and 3) Parks and Recreation. Each sub-committee will explore the need and viability of each project within their purview and make recommendations to the full Advisory Council, and ultimately to the mayor and city council. Tuscaloosa is fortunate to have Karen Brooks and Chris England guiding this accomplished group of community leaders. We have used similar structures for downtown, riverfront, and tornado recovery and it works. Tuscaloosa is at its best when we incorporate diversity of experiences from across our community.

The work of the Advisory Council will be transparent and will adhere to the Alabama Opens Meeting Act. The City will be updating their progress on elevatetuscaloosa.com. I encourage you to stay active and engaged as we work to take Tuscaloosa to the next level. We have the vision - Now, we have to make it happen!