Grand Rapids’ first female mayor will focus on city’s riverfront, neighborhoods

Aug 27, 2015

When City Commissioner Rosalynn Bliss succeeds longtime Grand Rapids mayor George Heartwell in January, she’ll do so as the first female mayor in the city’s history. Current State talks to Bliss about her historic election and the most pressing issues facing Grand Rapids. 

Grand Rapids mayor-elect Rosalynn Bliss at the Hollyhock Parade in Grand Rapids in July 2010.
Credit Flickr/Steven Depolo

The city of Grand Rapids will see new leadership in 2016, and the moment will be historic.  Three weeks ago, Second Ward Commissioner Rosalynn Bliss was elected the city’s next mayor.  She’ll take office on January 1st.

In succeeding long-time mayor George Heartwell, who is term-limited, Rosalynn Bliss will become the first female mayor in Grand Rapids’ history. She's also its youngest mayor in more than 100 years.  She’ll lead Michigan’s second largest city, a town that brought up boxer Floyd Mayweather and produced a president. Current State talks to Bliss about her vision for the future of Grand Rapids.