Thomas Michael Menino (December 27, 1942 – October 30, 2014) was an American politician who served as the 53rd mayor of Boston, from 1993 to 2014. He was the city's longest-serving mayor. He was elected mayor in 1993 after first serving three months in the position of "acting mayor" following the resignation of his predecessor Raymond Flynn (who had been appointed United States ambassador to the Holy See). Before serving as mayor, Menino was a member of Boston City Council and had been elected president of the City Council in 1993. Dubbed an "urban mechanic", Menino had a reputation for focusing on "nuts and bolts" issues and enjoyed very high public approval ratings as mayor. During his tenure, Boston saw a significant amount of new development, including the Seaport District, the redevelopment of Dudley Square (today known as "Nubian Square"), and the redevelopment of the area surrounding Fenway Park. Alongside this development, gentrification priced some longtime residents out of neighborhoods, as well as allegations of favoritism by Menino towards certain developers. During his tenure as mayor, crime in Boston fell to unprecedented lows, and the city came to rank among the safest large cities in the United States. Menino also undertook a number of environmentally-focused actions. In the last year of Menino's tenure, the city faced the Boston Marathon bombing, an incident of domestic terrorism. Menino was a liberal member of the Democratic Party. Menino led a powerful political machine in Boston and also played roles in national politics, such as serving as president of the United States Conference of Mayors from 2002 to 2003, bringing the 2004 Democratic National Convention to Boston, and co-founding the group Mayors Against Illegal Guns with New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. After the end of his mayoralty, he was appointed professor of the practice of political science at Boston University. He also served as co-founder and co-director of the Initiative on Cities, an urban leadership research center based at Boston University.
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