Monday, January 4, 2010
In his inaugural speech Monday Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl focused on building bridges and creating a “New Pittsburgh.” Mayor Ravenstahl has taken the oath three times but this one launched his first full term in office. He says he chose to hold the ceremony in an old north side church that now houses the community organization “The Pittsburgh Project” for a good reason. His parents and one set of his grandparents were married their when the church served as a cornerstone for the community and he says now that it has been take over by another non profit organization it is again serving as the cornerstone for the community, “but in a different way.” Ravenstahl says just like the building bridges the old Pittsburgh and the new he hopes to build a bridge to, “the new Pittsburgh” and he is, “laying the corner stone in my neighborhood.”
He says among the new bridges he will build will be one to Harrisburg in an effort to solve his top priority, which is dealing with the city’s pension program and financial situation. Ravenstahl says he is working toward, “financial freedom” for the city. He says he will also remain focused on the city’s neighborhoods promising to “extend a warm hand and a get it done attitude” to neighborhood leaders as the city moves into a new decade. Ravenstahl notes that the city’s crime rate is at a low not seen for more than a half century but it only matters how people feel in their neighborhoods. So he will continue to work on public safety issues. He says he will also spend the next four years working with educators at all levels and the Pittsburgh Promise to make sure the future is bright for every Pittsburgher.
Luke Ravenstahl’s father district justice Robert Ravenstahl administered the oath as the mayor held his son in his arms. Prior to taking the oath, Luke Ravenstahl’s mother Cynthia and his two brothers Adam and Brad read the Certificate of Election. The mayor’s wife Erin was in the audience but did not take the stage. The two recently announced their separation. When Ravenstahl was thanking his family he did thank his wife for her support over the last here years.