Fort Worth swears in new mayor Mattie Parker, council newcomers

Mattie Parker was sworn in as the new mayor of Fort Worth at the Fort Worth Convention Center June 15. (Steven Ryzewski/Community Impact Newspaper)
Mattie Parker was sworn in as the new mayor of Fort Worth at the Fort Worth Convention Center June 15. (Steven Ryzewski/Community Impact Newspaper)

Mattie Parker was sworn in as the new mayor of Fort Worth at the Fort Worth Convention Center June 15. (Steven Ryzewski/Community Impact Newspaper)

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Leonard Firestone is sworn in as District 7 councilmember on the Fort Worth City Commission with his family onstage. (Steven Ryzewski/Community Impact Newspaper)
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New Fort Worth Mayor Mattie Parker with her immediate predecessor, longtime mayor Betsy Price. (Steven Ryzewski/Community Impact Newspaper)
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New councilmember Dr. Jared Williams and his father after Williams was sworn in. (Steven Ryzewski/Community Impact Newspaper)
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Leonard Firestone shares a moment with his family after being sworn in as councilmember for District 7. (Steven Ryzewski/Community Impact Newspaper)
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New councilmember Chris Nettles, moments after being sworn in. (Steven Ryzewski/Community Impact Newspaper)
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New councilmember Elizabeth M. Beck addresses the crowd. (Steven Ryzewski/Community Impact Newspaper)
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Council members Michael Crain, left, Cary Moon and Gyna Bivens share a lighthearted moment during the night's festivities. (Steven Ryzewski/Community Impact Newspaper)
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Mattie Parker addresses the crowd at the Fort Worth Convention Center. (Steven Ryzewski/Community Impact Newspaper)
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Former Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price was recognized during new Mayor Mattie Parker's speech. (Steven Ryzewski/Community Impact Newspaper)
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New Fort Worth Mayor Mattie Parker shares a moment with one of her children after being sworn in. (Steven Ryzewski/Community Impact Newspaper)
Moments after being sworn in as the new mayor of Fort Worth—and the youngest current mayor of a major American city—37-year-old Mattie Parker had a message for the city's residents.

“It is go time in Fort Worth, Texas," Parker said. "It’s time for us to meet this moment.”

Parker's swearing-in was part of a ceremony June 15 at the Fort Worth Convention Center that also saw the swearing-in of four new members to the Fort Worth City Council: Dr. Jared Williams, District 6; Leonard Firestone, District 7; Chris Nettles, District 8; and Elizabeth M. Beck, District 9. They joined new Council Member Michael Crain, who won the seat for District 3 on May 1 and had already been sworn in.

Altogether, the most recent election cycle has introduced five new council members to the eight-person body. It also has dropped the average age of the members of the council by more than a decade. The new council members join returning members Carlos Flores of District 2), Cary Moon of District 4—which includes part of Northeast Fort Worth—and Gyna Bivens of District 5.

Firestone's District 7 includes a large portion of Northeast Fort Worth. During his remarks, Firestone talked about commonality in what he heard while canvassing the district during the campaign.


“I learned that even with the great geographic area and the large population of District 7, there was commonality in the wants and needs of citizens in every neighborhood,” Firestone said. “Focus on quality of life issues that we all share, strive for exceptional city services, lower our property taxes, ensure safe neighborhoods, improve infrastructure and mobility issues ... and ensure the best possible police, fire and first responder agencies. ... The mission is clear to me, and I’m ready to get to work.”

As for Parker, she replaces longtime Mayor Betsy Price, for whom she was chief of staff for five years. During her remarks Parker reflected on how her campaign overcame early challenges with name recognition, as well as how Fort Worth might overcome partisan politics.

“The only thing that I am partisan about is getting things done for Fort Worth and our residents here in this community,” she said. “My goal is unity. My purpose for the future and my approach is working together with each member of this City Council.”

Parker cited safe neighborhoods, the city's economy, its schools, police and fire departments, its public services and infrastructure as being among her top priorities. She spoke about the young, diverse council the city had just elected and talked about ramping up the city's economy and brand as a word-class destination, as well as retaining more of its homegrown talent.

Finally, she promised a focus on "moving Fort Worth forward and leaving not one neighborhood behind."
By Steven Ryzewski
Steven Ryzewski is the editor for Community Impact Newspaper's Grapevine-Colleyville-Southlake and Keller-Roanoke-Northeast Fort Worth editions. Before joining Community Impact in 2021, he worked in hyperlocal journalism for nine years in Central Florida as an editor, sports editor and correspondent.


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