Springfield welcomed its newly elected city officials on Friday afternoon, as Mayor Misty Buscher, City Treasurer Colleen Redpath Feger, and three new City Council members took the oath of office at the BOS Center.
Buscher defeated two-term Mayor Jim Langfelder in a closely contested race last month to become the second female Mayor in Springfield’s history. Prior to her run for Mayor of Springfield, Buscher served two terms as the City Treasurer.
The inauguration ceremony marked the start of a new era in Springfield's government. In her address, Mayor Buscher spoke of the bright future ahead with the thirteen elected officials who will be working together as a nonpartisan team.
"The election is over, and it is time for the work to begin," Buscher said. "We are nonpartisan, without bias or partisan. We will govern as we are designed, nonpartisan. We are a team that will work together to reach common goals. We are Illinoisans and Americans who want to see Springfield grow."
Joining Buscher and Redpath Feger in new positions were Larry Rockford, representing Ward 4, Jennifer Notariano, representing Ward 6, and Brad Carlson, representing Ward 7. Incumbent council members Chuck Redpath, Shawn Gregory, Roy Williams, Lakeisha Purchase, Erin Conley, Jim Donelan, and Ralph Hanauer, along with City Clerk Frank Lesko, also took their oaths for new 4-year terms.
Mayor Buscher’s remarks as prepared:
I would like to take this opportunity to thank some very important people in the audience. My parents, Charles and Veronica Tozer are here. They believed in me every step of the way. My daughter, Courtney, she tells me I inspire her, but to know her, you would know it is the opposite, she inspires me. My son and his wife, Anthony & Krystal along with my beautiful grandchildren they are the place I go to, to get away, smile, laugh and relax, thank you. My husband Mike, it is so hard to limit all that he does in one sentence, but without his love, faith and wisdom I would not be whole. And finally, if you participate in any of today’s events, the prayer service, this inauguration or the gala tonight, your experience would not be possible without the hard work of Val Yazell and Debbie Thompson. Val and Debbie we thank you.
There are people on this stage who are history makers, like Illinois Supreme Court Justice Lisa Holder White and former Mayor Karen Hasara, people who bring smiles to your face like Melanie Dennison or people who bring others together in a calm organized fashion like former Sheriff Neil Williamson. These leaders, who like the thirteen elected officials on this stage all have a purpose that drives them. That purpose might be non tangible like, equality, fairness, togetherness, or that purpose might be tangible like development, growth and opportunity. But one thing I know for sure, these thirteen elected officials are YOUR team for the next four years Springfield.
This team consisting of Alderman Redpath, Alderman Gregory, Alderman Williams, Alderman Rockford, Alderwoman Purchase, Alderwoman Notriano, Alderman Carlson, Alderwoman Conley, Alderman Donelan, Alderman Hanauer, Clerk Lesko, Treasurer Redpath Feger and myself are here to create equality, fairness,togetherness, development, growth and opportunity for the residents of Springfield.
The future is bright with these thirteen elected officials. The election is over, it is time for the work to begin. We are nonpartisan - without bias or partisan. We will govern as we are designed, nonpartisan. We are a team that will work together to reach common goals. We are Illinoisans and Americans who want to see Springfield grow.
Team, I would like to share with you a quote by Abby Wambach, because this is our vision for the next four years. “I never scored a goal in my life without getting a pass from someone else.” The Mayor cannot score a goal, without getting a pass or many passes from the other members of the team that are the other twelve elected officials. We are team Springfield, we are going to make many goals, together. Our Team that the citizens have elected are going to take our passions and turn them into actions for a better Springfield.
I am proud to stand here today, shoulder to shoulder with this team that is going to make magic happen in Springfield.
As I wrap up, I want to leave with a quote that I say often, from the inspirational Jim Rohn. “All of us need each of us”. All of us have to understand how important and how much value each of us brings. Our Team could not be complete without each and every one of us. Team, Thank you for taking the step to create a greater city for all of us.
Thank you and god bless.