Mayor of Denver Speaking

Monday, August 7 2006
12:00 PM to 4:00 PM

Gaslamp Quarters Marriott
660 K Street
San Diego, Ca

A small businessman who had never previously run for political office, John Hickenlooper was elected Mayor of Denver on June 3, 2003, and inaugurated on July 21, 2003. Since taking office, Mayor Hickenlooper passed a citywide charter reform initiative to modernize Denver’s personnel system, overcame a $70 million deficit to balance the City budget while averting major cuts in services and massive layoffs, reached deals with United, Frontier and Southwest Airlines enabling all carriers to grow at Denver International Airport, implemented the most sweeping set of police reforms in Denver’s history, built an unprecedented partnership with Denver Public Schools, launched efforts to create a more business-friendly environment in city government, initiated a citywide campaign to end homelessness, created Denver’s Sustainable Development Initiative, and ushered in a new era of bipartisan regional cooperation culminating in passage of the largest regional transit initiative in the history of the United States.

In April 2005 – less than two years into his first term – TIME Magazine named Mayor Hickenlooper one of the top five “big-city” mayors in America, and in November 2005, he was the only mayor named by Governing Magazine as one of the top Public Officials of the Year.

Hickenlooper’s passion for Denver began in 1981 when his career as an exploration geologist brought him to Buckhorn Petroleum, where he worked for five years. After the collapse of the oil industry, he found himself with a healthy severance check, no immediate job prospects, and time on his hands. Inspired by a visit to a northern California brewpub, he spent two years developing the Wynkoop Brewing Company, the first brewpub in the Rocky Mountains. The Wynkoop group grew to eventually include seven Denver restaurants and a brewpub in Colorado Springs.

A respected entrepreneur, Hickenlooper was also involved with numerous downtown Denver renovation and development projects and is credited as one of the pioneers that helped revitalize Denver’s Lower Downtown historic district. In recognition of his efforts supporting preservation in Denver and downtowns across the country, Hickenlooper received a National Preservation Award from the National Trust for Historic Preservation in 1997.

Long before he had ever considered public office, Hickenlooper was active in community affairs, serving on numerous civic boards including Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado, Denver Metro Convention and Visitors Bureau, Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce, Denver Civic Ventures, Colorado Business Committee for the Arts, the Denver Art Museum, the Association of Brewers, and the Institute for Brewing Studies. In 1987, he co-founded the Chinook Fund, a local foundation that provides seed grants to community organizations that emphasize social change. He also co-founded CultureHaus, the Denver Art Museum's 600-member young adult organization.

Leading a grassroots campaign to preserve the “Mile High Stadium” name in 2000 planted the seeds for his 2003 mayoral bid. An unlikely candidate facing a half-dozen seasoned political veterans, Hickenlooper made Denver history with his nearly two-to-one margin of victory. Mayor Hickenlooper began his term by assembling the most diverse team of city leadership Denver has ever known. Maintaining a commitment to diversity and excellence, Hickenlooper recruited corporate executives, local nonprofit leaders and government innovators from around the country, resulting in a team that is more than half women and more than half Latino/African-American/Asian.

In the two and a half years since his election, Mayor Hickenlooper has worked to increase civic engagement and participation throughout the city and Denver metro area, helping to bring all 32 metro mayors together to work on initiatives that benefit the entire region. His collaborative approach has built strong bonds and partnerships that transcend partisan and geographic lines. His integrity, hon

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