Like former Dallas mayor Tom Leppert, Dallas Mayor-elect Mike Rawlings worked as a top business guy, stresses fixing DISD, has even hired Leppert’s deputy chief of staff to be his right hand. But at a Meet the New Mayor deal last night at the Trinity Center–just before delivering a rah-rah stemwinder on the Trinity River Corridor Project–Rawlings replied to a questioner by saying that while Leppert is “a good person to emulate,” there are differences between them.
“I came from a background of civic service. … I’ve been here for 34 years of my life,” said Rawlings (pictured in photo by Jeanne Prejean). “The understanding I have of the city … I have a different management style. I’m a person who believes in understanding the trees to understand the forest. … I’m also a big believer in creativity, in trying new solutions.”
Then, darned if Rawlings didn’t go out front and do a bang-up impression of the former mayor selling the Trinity (without once mentioning that pesky toll road). Letting the people know “the Trinity will be done” is one of his main goals, Rawlings said. The undertaking will have more impact on commercial real estate than any project in Dallas history, he added. The “doubters” need to be convinced that it’s “real and do-able,” the mayor-elect went on, partly by breaking it up into manageable pieces with a sense of urgency. When all that’s done, he concluded, someday people will proclaim: “Dallas is the center of the Western hemisphere!” Tom Leppert–or Zig Ziglar–couldn’t have said it any better.