The Texan: Republican Mattie Parker declared winner in Fort Worth Mayoral race
By: Kim Roberts
Mattie Parker is the next presumptive mayor of Fort Worth, winning a Saturday night run-off against Tarrant County Democratic Party Chair Deborah Peoples.
”Fort Worth, you have just elected the youngest mayor of a big city in the United States of America,” Parker told supporters Saturday night.
Parker, who served as chief of staff for Mayor Betsy Price for five years and earned her endorsement, will replace the retiring mayor who has served in the office since 2011.
Parker thanked Price for “serving our community for 10 years and for allowing me to be the best version of myself.”
The 37-year-old attorney is currently CEO of Fort Worth Cradle to Career and Tarrant To & Through Partnership, which work to improve training in schools to prepare students for the workforce.
Parker is confident about Fort Worth’s future. “I come from a place of optimism,” Parker previously told The Texan.
“We have to tackle some tough challenges like growth and infrastructure, but I believe we are emerging from the COVID-19 pandemic well-positioned. I believe we have to eliminate red tape at city hall that keeps small businesses from success.”
Responding to a question during a candidate forum, Parker said she hopes to attract businesses to Fort Worth by going “on the road to sell the vision and mission of Fort Worth.”
“We need every tool to roll out the red carpet,” Parker said, and added that it’s not only about corporate relocations but supporting existing businesses, such as with tax abatements.
The Fort Worth Police Officers Association endorsed Parker. Its president, Manny Ramirez said of Parker, “She has stood shoulder to shoulder with us in the battle to defeat radical attempts to ‘defund’ the Fort Worth Police Department.”
On the other hand, Peoples, who also ran for mayor in 2019, was endorsed by groups like United Fort Worth — which describes itself as “a multiracial grassroots community org[anization] that actively works to challenge discriminatory policy & systems of oppression” — and Emily’s List, a group committed to electing abortion-rights supporting women to office.
Peoples won the highest number of votes during the May 1 election, 33.6 percent of the vote, when ten candidates were in the race. Parker came in second with 30.82 percent.
Parker will be sworn in as mayor at a special called city council meeting on June 15 at the Convention Center in downtown Fort Worth.