Kevin Johnson on Wednesday was installed as president of the U.S. Conference of Mayors, becoming the first Sacramento mayor to lead the organization in its 81-year history.
Johnson said a goal of his term as leader of the nonpartisan organization is to raise Sacramento’s national visibility.
During his time in the high-profile post, Johnson will set the political and advocacy agenda for an organization that represents cities with populations greater than 30,000.
Johnson was installed as president of the mayors’ group Wednesday afternoon at the Citizen Hotel in downtown Sacramento.
His promotion to the leadership role from vice president is occurring two months earlier than planned because the current president – Mesa, Ariz., Mayor Scott Smith – is resigning from his mayoral post to run for governor of his home state.
Johnson’s new position requires him to attend high-level meetings in Washington and run conferences attended by hundreds of mayors and CEOs.
In anticipation of Johnson’s expected absences this year, the City Council has named a vice mayor and, for the first time, a mayor pro tem. Councilman Jay Schenirer is serving as vice mayor for 2014; Councilwoman Angelique Ashby is the mayor pro tem and will step in to run council meetings when Johnson and Schenirer are not around.
Call The Bee’s Bill Lindelof, (916) 321-1079.