Thomas Richards (mayor)

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Richards announced on February 6, 2013 that he would run for re-election for a full term of his own as Rochester mayor. He lost the Democratic primary to City Council President Lovely A. Warren 57% to 42%. The defeat was considered an upset, as Richards was better funded and led in the pre-vote polling. Richards ended his active campaign and endorsed Warren, but was kept as the chosen candidate on the Independence and Working Families lines. The Independence Party created the grass roots Turn Out for Tom campaign. In response, Richards stated that he would serve if re-elected mayor but denied having any contact with the Independence Party campaign. Richards lost the election to Warren 55% to 39%.

Political Legacy

Richards political career may be remembered for his time as corporation counsel for the City of Rochester under the Duffy administration. This included the selling of the Fast Ferry, the redevelopment of the Midtown Plaza site which included buying the former shopping center, its demolition and the deals to bring in PAETEC (now Windstream) as the anchor tenant of the new development. He also helped sort out many financial difficulties at the Port of Rochester after the Fast Ferry ceased operations, with High Falls, and with local sports teams and landmarks. Richards negotiated a health care agreement with ambulance provider Rural Metro, settled labor contracts and repaired relationships with the city's unions. [8]

Under Richards as mayor projects such as the building of Rochester's new train station, the building of a new RGRTA bus terminal, the Charlotte Marina Project and the filling in of the east side of the Inner Loop were started. Development of the Midtown project continued.

After office

It was announced on March, 3rd 2014 that Richards was appointed to be chairman of the Rochester City School District volunteer board overseeing a $1.3 billion city school modernization program. [9]


Richards is a graduate of Bucknell University and Cornell University Law School, and served in the U.S. Navy.

Richards is a trustee of the University of Rochester and of George Eastman House.

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  1. Thomas Richards to step in as Rochester’s deputy mayor
  2. democratandchronicle October 28, 2010
  3. Thomas S. Richards sworn in as Mayor of Rochester
  4. Rochester's new mayor meets the press
  5. Thomas Richards resigns as Rochester mayor; Carlos Carballada to take his place
  6. Richards resigns mayor's post; Carballada tapped as acting mayor
  7. 2011 Special Mayoral Certification - Monroe County Board of Elections
  8. "Adding up Thomas Richards' legacy".
  9. "Former Mayor Thomas Richards to lead school panel".
Thomas S. Richards
68th Mayor of Rochester
In office
April 11, 2011 December 31, 2013
Political offices
Preceded by Mayor of Rochester, NY
January 1, 2011 - January 20, 2011
Succeeded by
R. Carlos Carballada
Preceded by
R. Carlos Carballada
Mayor of Rochester, NY
April 11, 2011 - December 31, 2013
Succeeded by