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Posted on January 9, 2018 at 3:43 PM by Merle S. Gorden
In just a few short days, I will leave the Beachwood Mayor’s Office after 23 years. I am honored to have served our residents during that time, and humbled to have worked with so many committed city employees, council members, business leaders and other appointed and elected officials.
As one might imagine, this is a bittersweet transition for me. This office has become my second home, and the staff my second family. If you really know me, you know I lived to serve the Beachwood community.
My ultimate goal as Mayor was to keep Beachwood strong for years and decades to come. I think we have done that, and for that I am proud. It is gratifying and comforting to be able to step away just after our community was named the #1 suburb in Cuyahoga County by Cleveland Magazine. This Administration’s accomplishments are a tribute to the hard work, dedication and expertise of every city employee and official. I could not have done my job without them.
I believe I have left the city in better condition than it was when I took office. I have had some time to reflect on all we’ve accomplished and thought I would share a short list.
Economic Development: The City has focused resources on attracting, retaining and growing its business sector to further preserve and enhance the community. We have had unparalleled economic development for a city our size. Since 2007, the City of Beachwood has seen over $900 Million in new capital investment – an amazing statistic for a city of 12,000 residents. The presence of businesses in Beachwood helps to pay for the City’s excellent municipal services. Here are some noteworthy achievements that have occurred:
Safety: The police and fire departments have worked tirelessly to become best in class. Among many notable accomplishments, Beachwood:
Unparalleled Municipal Services: One of the things I hear most often from our residents and visitors is about how our roads are cleared fast when it snows. I’m proud of these excellent and aggressive snow removal efforts and other outstanding municipal services. Among other things, we:
We have accomplished all of this in a city with excellent fiscal health; one that has consistently received the highest bond ratings and where property taxes are among the lowest and housing values are among the highest in the county.
Our success and reputation is built upon a collaborative partnership between the city, the Beachwood Chamber of Commerce and Beachwood City Schools. I have enjoyed working within that partnership for 23 years, and can assure you it is constantly improving our city. Throughout my tenure, Beachwood’s business community has provided a circle of support with a clear vision for the future.
There’s not possibly enough space here to name everyone who deserves my thanks, but I hope I get to each of you in due time. For now, I would like to thank some of those I’ve worked closely with as Mayor, including members of City Council who were an integral part of my administration: Mel Jacobs, Fredric Goodman, Mark Wachter, Mark Mintz, Martin Arsham and Si Wachsberger, who was instrumental in getting me into city government.
Thank you to Armin Guggenheim, who has been a great support to me and a tireless advocate for Beachwood. Thank you also to Jonathan and Shelly Berns, as well as Dick Adler.
And most importantly, my deepest gratitude to my supportive family— my wife Harriet and my children Carey and Jamie.
Our city’s success story is bound to continue with Mayor Martin Horwitz and our City Council, and I sincerely wish them much success in the future.
While my time as Mayor is ending shortly, my time as your fellow resident, colleague and/or friend continues well into the future. I look forward to my continued involvement in the city as a resident who is immensely proud to call Beachwood home.
Thank you, truly from the bottom of my heart, for choosing me to lead this great City for nearly two and a half decades. It was one of the greatest honors of my life, and I am forever grateful.