FRAMINGHAM (CBS) – With cheers and roaring applause, Yvonne Spicer made history twice in Framingham. She’s the new city’s first mayor and the first African American woman to be elected mayor by voters in Massachusetts.
Spicer won the city’s top position on a promise to be “the people’s mayor.”
On Monday, the political newcomer formally accepted that mandate acknowledging there’s a bunch of eyes on her and a lot of work to be done. She was humble in her acceptance, but confident in her outlook.
“One day, one step at a time,” Mayor Spicer said. “I’m confident that together we will do a great job.”
By “we”, she means the new council and school board also sworn in Monday, as Framingham makes the leap from the nation’s oldest town to the state’s newest city. It’s the place she moved to as a fledgling teacher years ago.
“I started my career here, I bought a home here, I established roots here, I raised my niece here,” Spicer said.
And now she’s mayor here, a political novice who swamped her more experienced opponents with a grass roots campaign, urging Framingham’s diverse residents to help her reinvent the city’s struggling schools.
“I encourage all of us to reach out to each other and discover how we are woven with similar thread,” Spicer said.
She’s also pledging to recruit new business as the new city looks for an economic rebound.
“We’re building this ship as we drive it,” Spicer told reporters. “And yes we’ll trip up sometimes, but we’ll get back on course.”
Spicer says she’s already met with each incoming city councilor and everyone seems to be on the same page.
She’s also encouraging ideas from residents to help design the city’s new seal so it can be a symbol that reflects today’s Framingham — not yesterday’s.