Today, Stephanie Rawlings-Blake stepped down from office after serving as Baltimore's mayor for six years. Rawlings-Blake -- who previously held the position of City Council President -- assumed office after former mayor Sheila Dixon was forced to resign after pleading guilty to misappropriation of funds. Rawlings-Blake was elected again in 2011, in 2015 she announced she would not seek re-election.
Rawlings-Blake’s tenure was marked by notable achievements but also fraught with controversy. Nationally, the Mayor may be remembered for her response during the 2015 Uprising following the death of Freddie Gray -- she was criticized for not stopping the “riots” quickly enough and for referring to “rioters” as thugs.” But she will also be remembered for attracting businesses like Amazon to the area, overseeing the $5.5B Port Covington development deal, and launching major initiatives to address the city's aging infrastructure.
Three astute political observers who have followed Rawlings-Blake's term in office join Tom in the studio today to help us assess the former mayor's impact on Baltimore and the legacy she leaves as newly-inaugurated Mayor Catherine Pugh takes office:
Andrew Green is the opinion editor for the Baltimore Sun. He was the city/state editor before coming to the editorial board, and prior to that he covered the State House and Baltimore County government.
Jean Marbella is a reporter on the Baltimore Sun’s investigative and enterprise team. She joined The Sun in 1987 and has been a health reporter, a feature writer, a national correspondent, an editor and a metro columnist.