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Yemi Mobolade sworn in Tuesday as Colorado Springs’ 42nd mayor

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) - On Tuesday, the new mayor of Colorado Springs officially took office through a swearing-in ceremony.

During the 10 a.m. event, Yemi Mobolade recited the oath of office and became Colorado Springs' 42nd mayor at the Pioneers Museum downtown; an estimated 1,200 people swarmed on the museum's south lawn to see the event.


Watch the Mayor-Elect, Yemi Mobolade get sworn in, in the video above.

Mobolade embraced his wife, Abbey, after taking the oath and received a standing ovation from the crowd.


He expressed humility and gratitude during his speech.

"That someone like me could come to this country, have the opportunities to study, eventually work, start a business, find family, move to this city, and have the support of so many people," he said. "It truly is humbling and I fully intend to use these opportunities for the good of our residents of this great city."


Mobolade, in his mid -40s, emigrated from Nigeria, was active in the Colorado Springs business community and became the city's first black elected mayor; another black man -- the late Leon Young -- was appointed in 1997 to serve the remainder of the term of the late Bob Issac, who had retired.

The new mayor said that he would keep his promise to run an accessible, transparent and proactive government that will be more citizen-friendly.


"It's time to get to work," he said. "All I ask is for the people who didn't support me, to give me a chance to show that I'm an effective leader."

To that end, Mobolade said that he had scheduled a 2 p.m. meeting with his cabinet and department heads.


"We're going to talk about the kind of culture and vision we want," he explained.

Several longtime community leaders reflected on whether Mobolade's popularity is because of his race -- or in spite of it.


"What is going to change? The mentality of the citizens," said June Waller. "They are seeking and looking for different. In the years I've been here -- Issac, Bach, Suthers -- it's been the same, almost."

Willie Breazell said that expectations for Mobolade are similar to those of Barack Obama when he was elected president in 2008.


"He's got to be a mayor for all the people, and I'm sure he's going to try to do that.," Breazell stated. "Especially in Colorado Springs, which typically has a bad rep as a white-bread type of community."

Lawrence Martinez also is a long time community activist who was a mayoral candidate this year.


"People needed a fresh start," he said. "Many people were losing hope in the situations they were in -- especially the lower- and middle-income class. They were being forgotten in other administrations. A lot of people saw the opportunity to be able to move forward with Yemi, and I think we're going to be able to do that now."

Shana Mararie Haoris, who held a sign supporting Mobolade, seemed to speak for many present.


"He's with the people," she said. "He knows what's going on. He seems like a strong leader."

Mobolade previously said that he hoped his campaign and election would inspire others, especially children and minorities, to believe that anything is possible.


At the ceremony, one girl said that the new mayor inspired her, while a boy said he liked Mobolade because he's friends with one of his children.


The ceremony lasted around 90 minutes and was followed by a public reception inside the museum.

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Scott Harrison

Scott is a reporter for KRDO. Learn more about Scott here.


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