In 2017 Mayor Spicer and I celebrated the beginning of a new journey for our community. Framingham had just elected her, an African-American woman, as its first Mayor, and me, the first Brazilian-American to the City Council. We shattered a glass ceiling and embarked on transforming a town into a city.
As an elected Councilor, I witnessed first-hand how hard Mayor Spicer worked to make the voters’ dreams and vision for the new city of Framingham a reality, despite the resentment and the constant challenges to her capabilities, intentions, and authority. She did not have enough support staff or resources, and her decisions and work style were challenged at every step.
The City Council often blamed the Mayor for decades-old problems she inherited like the water and sewer finances, dormant properties, traffic and safety, and contaminated sites. Many city councilors continuously bucked and admonished her with an obstructionist approach. She endured it and forged forward staying true to the people of Framingham and her promises.
How do we expect things to change if our new government behaves like it did for decades? Publicly, the majority of city councilors call for collaboration and partnership with the Mayor but then failed to respect, consider, and support her ideas or even support her onboarding into this new role in this new city.
Mayor Spicer held her head high and worked to improve our city, while gaining the trust and forging relationships with city employees and statewide colleagues. Then came the COVID-19 pandemic, the biggest threat to public health this century. The Mayor and the city employees stepped up to the plate. Not once was the trash not collected or the roads not plowed. City services continued and were adjusted. Mayor Spicer brought COVID testing sites to the city and secured vaccines for our residents. Mayor Spicer brought organizations together to ensure that families didn’t go hungry, essential workers could quarantine and small businesses had assistance.
Mayor Spicer successfully passed a test that far exceeded any challenges her local political predecessors have faced.
Did we expect the first four years of our city to be without bumps? Of course not, but Mayor Spicer has faced undeserved hostility from resentful city leadership in addition to a global pandemic. She has met both with dedication, resilience and consistent hard work. She has kept her promises and Framingham is stable, thriving and growing. There is no doubt we can trust that she will continue to lead us forward, serving our community with integrity and honesty as she has demonstrated all along, and with the people as her focus.
Mayor Spicer has my trust, my support, and my vote. I encourage you to join me on Tuesday November 2nd and vote to re-elect Mayor Spicer to another term!