Hicks-Hudson talks about time as mayor

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TOLEDO - (13abc, Action News) - Outgoing Toledo mayor Paula Hicks-Hudson sat down with 13abc reporter Bill Hormann.

She is a public servant who shuns grabbing the headlines yet managed to be council member, council president and serve nearly a full term as mayor in just 7 years.

Her mayoral term began with the tragedy of mayor Mike Collins' death in February, 2015.

It's ending with her defeat in November to Wade Kapszikewicz.

Hicks-Hudson understands the voters verdict but says, "My biggest regret was that we as the city government didn't get our message out in a way that really tells the story about the City of Toledo."

That success includes the huge Promedica move downtown, three summers of clean water, fixed streets, good police communications with the people they serve and reducing reliance on road money to balance the budget.

She says election results aside, people notice.

"What they say to me is thank you for making a difference because we can see the impact on the city," she says.

The mayor admits she's not a RA-RA type; she's more an introvert but she was happy to dig into the details.

Hicks-Hudson said, "The excitement for me comes about when we take an issue and we resolve it and we solve that problem."

Like cleaning up alleys and cutting grass; issues that aren't glamorous but effective good government.

But she will miss the people she's met as mayor because, after all, a city isn't just potholes and politicians, it's people.

And her advice to the incoming mayor is simple. "Listen and make decisions that are not just for answering the question for today but how will that decision impact into the future."

The mayor says she fine with leaving office.

She's convinced the city is better now than when she started.

And she's encouraging people to get involved in public service, either on a board or elective office or volunteer work.

In that way, we have our own impact.

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