Mayor Smith earned a
degree in Accounting from Brigham Young University, and MBA and Juris Doctor
degrees from Arizona State University.
Serving in his first
elected office, Mayor Smith has used his private-sector experience as a CEO,
accountant and attorney to usher in a new era of decisive leadership and civic
engagement. Smith led efforts for the largest reorganization of city
government in Mesa’s history reducing the budget nearly 20 percent, while
simultaneously making the city more effective, efficient and business-friendly.
Most recently, Mayor
Smith was instrumental in attracting Apple, Inc. to establish a new U.S.
manufacturing facility in Mesa creating 2,000 new jobs in engineering,
manufacturing and construction.
Realizing that a
strong higher education environment is crucial to producing much-needed high
wage jobs, Mayor Smith spearheaded the recruitment of five liberal arts colleges
to Mesa. All five institutions, which includes Arizona’s first Catholic
college, will join Arizona State University Polytechnic Campus, Mesa Community
College, and Northern Arizona University’s Mesa Campus in transforming the
educational landscape of the region. Four of the five new colleges will be
located downtown, creating a college town atmosphere and complimenting the light
rail extension through the heart of Mesa.
During his 2012
State of the City address, Mayor Smith announced StartUpMesa,
an innovative initiative to make Mesa the most business-friendly city in
America. StartUpMesa expands collaboration between business and government,
empowers and strengthens small business, fosters innovation, expands access to
capital, provides entrepreneurship education and removes barriers to success.
Mayor Smith’s HEAT
initiative – which stands for Healthcare, Education, Aerospace, Tourism and
Technology – has provided Mesa with economic development direction and focus
that has lead to many successful efforts. For example, he created a way to
finance a Chicago Cubs spring training facility which voters approved by a 2 to
1 margin. Also, under Mayor Smith’s leadership, Mesa gained the keys to AZLabs,
a high-security former military lab that has the potential to become a national
aerospace research center. Another success is Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport,
which has become a thriving commercial airport with several airlines serving
more than 1.5 million passengers.
Mayor Smith also
iMesa, a cutting-edge civic engagement
initiative. Leveraging online crowdsourcing technology, iMesa is a grassroots
improvement effort where residents submit, vote, comment on and process ideas
that will transform the community. In the November 2012 election, voters
overwhelmingly approved a $70 million parks plan generated from the
internationally acclaimed iMesa effort.
The Arizona Republic
has touted Mayor Smith’s regional and local leadership and vision, writing, “He
has strengthened ties with several cities and has gained the confidence of many
skeptical residents. The change is so marked that we shudder to think what shape
the city would be in without him at the helm.”
Mayor Smith is also
sought after for his insight and commentary on city and national issues.
He has been quoted in national publications such as The New York Times, Wall
Street Journal, Washington Post and USA Today. Mayor Smith has also
appeared on news outlets such as ABC News, CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, CNBC, Fox
Business, Bloomberg Television, and CNN Español.
Mayor Smith is a
fourth-generation Arizonan who lived in Tucson before moving to Mesa in his
youth. He and his wife Kim have been married for more than 30 years and
have three children and five grandchildren.
Complete list of boards and committees
often ask myself, "What will Mesa be like when my grandchildren have families?
Will they want to live in Mesa, as generations before them have done? Will they
have the opportunity to find high paying jobs within the city? Will they feel
confident that their children can receive the best education possible? Will they
feel protected and secure? Will they live in an All-American City?"
As I ponder these questions, I recognize that the decisions we make, and the
actions we take will determine the kind of city we create for our children and
grandchildren. For their sake, we must commit to building that All-American
We must start today to change so we can build a better Mesa. As we address
today's issues, we also set the stage for the future. To build an All-American
Mesa, I believe we must focus our vision on six critical areas.
As your mayor, I promise that I will do all within my power to see that our
vision of a better Mesa comes to fruition. I am confident that with faith,
dedication, commitment, and a lot of hard work, we can make this desert blossom
into an even more beautiful and desirable rose. We can make Mesa the place of
choice for people and for business. Let's start building a better Mesa together.
Families can live in safer, more active neighborhoods.
We can "Build a Better Mesa" by increasing local access to quality education, as
well as affording families local venues for shopping and recreation.
Future generations can stay in the city and realize their career
goals. "Building a Better Mesa" means working to expand its
economic base so all of its citizens can enjoy high paying jobs without leaving
Build pride in our community. In order to
Better Mesa," we need to make Mesa a place where families, businesses and
investors want to live and work.
Leader in regional issues. "Building a Better
Mesa" does not mean that we only look within our own borders for change.
We must work with our neighbors as a region on common issues such as
transportation and infrastructure planning and development.
Re-establish trust in city government. As a
government, we cannot "Build a Better Mesa" without the guidance of our
citizens. We must prove to them that the City is wise with its finances,
transparent in its dealings and respectful to its residents.
Economic Development city-wide. We can no
longer rely on growth as our sole economic development tool. In order to
"Build a Better Mesa" we also need to look at renewing and revitalizing our
Working for You
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In The News
Governing Magazine: Can Cities and Suburbs Work
Arizona Republic: Mesa Mayor fears Congress won't
act on immigration
Detroit Free Press: Will Detroit bankruptcy lead to
others? U.S. Conference of Mayors weighs in
National Journal: The Nationâ€™s Future Depends on Its
Cities, Not on Washington
ABC 15: Flights for Life
NPR: Mayors Warn Congress That Sequestration Could
Hit City Services
Arizona Capitol Times: Mesa mayor says lifting
bonds' tax-exempt status could hurt cities
MSNBC with Alex Witt
MSNBC: Creativity still key as Smith approaches 2nd
Mesa mayoral term
Arizona Republic: Mesa's coup for Arizonans
Fox Business with Neil Cavuto: Can Federal and State
Governments learn budget lessons from cities?
Arizona Republic: Mesa Mayor Scott Smith's
successful first term
NPR: Don't Forget All Politics Is Local, Mayor Says
Arizona Republic: Mesa residents can help shape
future of city
Arizona Republic: Mesa ratifies mayor, 3 council
members; Ash leads JP race
Arizona Republic: How Mesa became a college town
New York Times: Mayors see slight gains, no thanks
MSNBC with Thomas Roberts: Mayors meeting focuses on
Arizona Capitol Times: Mayor Smith voted Best
Republican Elected Official
East Valley Tribune: Mesa mayor Smith to be VP of
national mayors organization, eventual president
Cronkite News: Defense cuts could be 'devastating' to region's economy
Arizona Republic: Mesa lands Albright College
campus; city's 3rd school deal this year
Dial Global Radio Network interview with Jim
Bohannon: Mayor's on the front line when it comes to
Arizona Capitol Times: Mesa to be in national
spotlight as it hosts GOP debate
Arizona Republic: Eyes will be on Mesa's triumph
ABC News: Bipartisan Mayors group turned road
FOX News: Cities still struggling to recover
Bloomberg: Few U.S. Cities Recoup Jobs as Economy
Rebounds From Recession
Arizona Republic: Three Mayors from Arizona meet
with President Obama in D.C.
Arizona Republic: Eastside Mayors hope Obama
talks job creation during visit
Chicago Tribune: Play ball! Spring training has
turned the Phoenix area into a virtual baseball
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PO Box 1466
Mesa, AZ 85211
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