For Mayor Dan Rizzo, the last three years have been a whirlwind (literally), and a roulette wheel (literally), but the extraordinary circumstances that have played out in his first term have not discouraged him, but rather have encouraged him to keep seeking out the small victories often overlooked in public life.
With that in mind, Rizzo is set to announce his campaign for re-election this Thursday night at Casa Lucia during his annual St. Patrick’s Day Dinner.
There appears to be, at this point, no one poised to run against him.
“I want people to know I am going to run for re-election,” he said. “It’s been a quick and entertaining three years. We’ve been able to complete a lot of good things, but there is still more to do. I’m going to use this annual event as an opportunity to let people know I am running for re-election.”
Rizzo said he still has a hard time believing that it’s time to run again for re-election; that more than three years have already passed since he was inaugurated into office.
“With the casino, the tornado and the Market Basket delays, I feel that I’ve been in a high speed washing machine over the last three years,” he said with a laugh. “But we’ve had a lot of good things happen too. The opening of the Market Basket has, in fact, revitalized Northgate. Harley Davidson had their grand opening recently and that has led to the clean up of Linden Square…By the end of my first term, people will be able to see significant improvements in Broadway and a revitalization of our Central Business District…We’ve had challenges and we’ve had setbacks, but Revere is indeed on the move and I see only a bright future for the city.”
Rizzo said one of the key things that has kept him going through the last three years over the highs and lows of the corner office is the routine, small victories like fixing a sidewalk for someone or being able to help those in need.
“I never thought in my wildest dreams that 15 years later I’d still be involved in politics,” he said. “I didn’t come from a political family; no one has pursued a political office before in my family. They were as shocked as anyone that I was interested. I do love it. I get encouraged by the small victories. I get great satisfaction from those things…To be able to give the tornado victims some sort of relief – that was arguably one of the best feelings I’ve had as mayor in being able to deliver those checks.”
One things Rizzo said he now understands much better is how critical it is for the mayoral term to be four years instead of just two years. That change came about during former Mayor Tom Ambrosino’s time in office, several years ago in the early 2000s. It was a measure that was put on the local ballot and approved overwhelmingly by local voters.
“I’m grateful that Mayor Ambrosino got that changed,” he said. “You get to spend more time doing the job rather than running for the job. Imagine if after my first year I was running for re-election. I would have been awful. I would have spent all my time campaigning.”
After the announcement on Thursday, the campaign will begin to ramp up activities as the spring sets in.