Rochester Mayor Malik Evans takes office and delivers inaugural address


Rochester Mayor Malik Evans called for a new era of neighborhood empowerment and citizen engagement in his inaugural address on Saturday.

“We will take control of our neighborhoods and work to eradicate the violence and the scourge,” he said. “May this day be the day we say we can have public safety with the community at the center while having responsibility simultaneously.

“May this day be the day we reaffirm the preciousness of life, and say homicide is too much, and violence and destruction must never be normalized.”

The Rochester native, 41, takes office after a year of unprecedented violence. His first act after being sworn in at midnight was to visit the emergency operations center and thank the 911 workers for their service.

His speech was infrequent, limited mainly to close family, some staff and artists. The inaugural event and activities to follow have only been made virtual due to the dramatic increase in new cases of COVID in the community.

The 90-minute inauguration featured a wide range of music, dance and prayer. Other speakers included US Senator Chuck Schumer with a pre-recorded video address and Monroe County Director Adam Bello in person.

Rochester Mayor Malik Evans was sworn in at midnight on Saturday by his wife Shawanda and eldest son Cameron at his downtown campaign offices.  The swearing-in was redone when he was inaugurated later that day at the Eastman Theater.

Bello and Evans have promised a solid partnership, with Bello reflecting on Saturday how, for decades, it seems, the city and county have stood out, seeking collaboration only when needed.

“There are so many reasons to be optimistic… because the walls have come down,” Bello said. “We are building a bridge.”

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Evans, who becomes the city’s 71st mayor, spoke for less than 15 minutes, saying straight away: “I am overcome with emotion on this day.”

Mayor Malik Evans delivers his inaugural address on Saturday, January 1, 2022 at the Eastman Theater.  The event was made virtual only, with attendees limited to close family, some staff and artists, given the increase in COVID-19 cases in the community.

He spoke of providing jobs “to all the young people who want one.” It will be one of our best violence reduction strategies ”; to rebuild the middle class and create the conditions for entrepreneurs to thrive, especially in green tech, data science, healthcare and cannabis brewing.

He spoke of transforming the city, “not by nibbling the edges but by seeing the big picture.” And he echoed former mayors in demanding better schools in the city.

“As mayor, I am committed to doing my part,” he said.

Mayor Malik Evans delivers his inaugural address on Saturday, January 1, 2022 at the Eastman Theater.  The event was made virtual only, with attendees limited to close family, some staff and artists, given the increase in COVID-19 cases in the community.

But unlike Mayor Lovely Warren before him, who called himself mayor of education early on and pledged to lead efforts to fix the city’s schools, Evans said: “Change will only come through the wider community – led by parents and our school system working hand in hand. ”

Other planned inaugural events include:

  • A citywide prayer service at 1 p.m. Sunday,and will be broadcast live from the Baptist Missionary Church in Aenon. The day of prayer can be viewed here.
  • A teenage town hall is scheduled for 5 p.m. Tuesday and will air from downtown Innovation Square (the former Xerox Tower). Evans will join the event with NFL Super Bowl champion Roland Williams, Shirley Green, the city’s new recreation and social services commissioner, and Camille Simmons, the city’s newly elected school board member. A link for this event was not yet available. Teens interested in participating should contact Courtney Thomas at [email protected]
Rochester Mayor Malik Evans signs his official oath card just after midnight on Saturday at his downtown campaign office.

“We have a past to remember, a present to live in and a future to build,” Evans said at the opening of his keynote address, later concluding: “Rochester, our time is now, a new year is a new beginning. , and together we will chart a course that will bridge Rochester’s future.

“Today we mark the beginning.”

Contact reporter Brian Sharp at [email protected] or 585-258-2275. Follow him on twitter @sharproc. This coverage is only possible with the support of our readers.



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