Mayor Bill Carpenter for a Second Term

Mayor Bill Carpenter Endorsement Speech

Tamboo Bistro and Lounge

Brockton, MA


Well first of all, let me say thank you to you for being here. We are all so very busy with our demanding lives—working, taking care of the kids, taking care of our parents, trying to sneak in the occasional time away to unwind.

There are so many reasons—legitimate reasons—why you could have decided not to be here today. But, you elected to come.

My mom always told me—and I live by this dictum even today—you’re only as good as the company you keep. And I’d say I’m in very good company tonight!

I thought about making my comments really, really long. Figured I'd have a big, captive audience.

And because I’m retiring, we all know that no one will even care about what I think very soon. I probably won’t even get my old political friends to return my phone calls.

In fact, when I first announced my retirement, the Mayor and I scheduled a meeting about a different issue. And he joked, as I walked in the door: I’m not really sure why I’m meeting with you anyway, you’re a lame duck.

We laughed a bit. But I thought about that: How to make my last several months on the City Council more meaningful.

So I committed myself to being more thoughtful, more strategic, more in touch with whatever I do. And my being here today, to endorse Mayor Carpenter, is a part of that commitment.

So first of all, let me start off by saying, I didn’t vote for Mayor Carpenter.

I was one of those skeptics. I certainly knew enough, having been on the Council for two terms, not to be a full believer in the current system. But I was skeptical of Carpenter.

He won—without my vote—and I was wrong and he was right. Let me tell you why he was right.

I speak only from my personal, professional dealings with the Mayor. And of course, we come to many of our rightful opinions of people through personal experience. It’s called relationships. And my relationship with the Mayor has been exceptional.

Soon after his election. I reached out to him. We met at my home. We agreed to disagree on the power plant, but also agreed that any and everything else would be open for collaboration.

I discussed with the Mayor my concept for a youth idea incubated that would give young people in Brockton a place to go to build out their talents and aspirations. He supported it because it was the right thing for Brockton.

In later conversations, the Mayor expressed to me his desire to bring on board Chief Hayden to make some heavy reforms to our police department—starting from the very top. I supported it because it was the right thing for Brockton.

I met with the Mayor about my work on making sure department heads had performance reviews and were held accountable for doing their jobs well—like everyone else who has a job. He supported it because it was the right thing for Brockton.

The Mayor informed me about the casino, about how it would create good paying jobs for people who wanted to work and provide benefits like payments toward college. I supported it because it was the right thing for Brockton.

And the Mayor also asked to meet with me to discuss the power plant. I said good try Mr. Mayor, but that’s not going to happen.

And don’t get me wrong, these weren’t situations of quid pro quo—you scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours.

At its basic, they were situations where we agreed to put any personal dislikes, mistrusts, and misunderstandings aside, to not be politicking all the time but to be serious about governing, and to put Brockton first.

After all, that’s what all of you in this room elected us to do, right?

In his first team, Mayor Carpenter has put in place a City Planner—the first in 8 years—developed a master plan for Brockton, and created a downtown historic district.

He’s brought the city into this century, finally, by implementing new technology projects like online bill payment and applications forms, GIS mapping, and Stat Net.

The Mayor is finding new ways to generate revenue for the city without always coming to us, the taxpayer, including the pilot program to get nonprofits to make payments in lieu of taxes and auctioning off surplus, city owned property to the tune of over $1 million so far.

And he’s pushing real diversity—from our boards and commissions to city staff positions. We had the most diverse class of police cadets in the history of our city this year, under this Mayor.

The list goes on. And I’m sure the Mayor has his list of accomplishments here.

And of course, these successes don’t happen because of the work of one man, or one office. Success happens because teams of people come together to work together.

I’m proud to say that I believe I’ve been a member of that team. And so have many of you in this room.

I few elections ago, I wanted your job Mr. Mayor. And you never know what the future holds.

So why am I endorsing you. Why am I endorsing Bill Carpenter for Mayor?  Because I would have wanted to be a Mayor like you.

Sure, we have different personalities, different styles, different ways of doing things. But that’s the how. We should never get too bogged down by logistics.

I like to focus on the big stuff: They why and the what. The why: because you care. The what: all those accomplishments I just cited, and all the successes to come.

Thank you for your service, for your friendship, thank you for putting Brockton first.

Here’s to two more years, Mr. Mayor!