The Former Mayor of Philadelphia and Former Chair of the Republican National Committee offer an insightful, robust, and most importantly, refreshingly candid program on the most debated political issues of the day.
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Michael Nutter served as the 98th Mayor of the City of Philadelphia, his hometown. He served 22.5 years as an elected official in Philadelphia, serving 14.5 years as a City Council member, and then 2 four year terms as Mayor, leaving office on January 4, 2016 due to term limits.
Mayor Nutter was considered one of the foremost leaders in innovation, tackling challenges of public safety, increasing funding for educating children, revitalizing the economy and spurring economic growth, restoring ethics and integrity to city government, ensuring fiscal discipline and making Philadelphia one of the great green and sustainable cities in America.
Known for keeping an active and engaged schedule as Mayor, Michael Nutter is doing the same as a private citizen. He's a Professor at Columbia University, a Senior Fellow with Bloomberg Philanthropies What Works Cities Program, Chair of the Mayors Advisory Board for Airbnb, and holds numerous Fellowships and Advisory positions in academic, political, non-profit and corporate entities. Mayor Nutter is actively engaged in the work of cities and trying to make them work better on behalf of their citizens.
As former chairman of the Republican National Committee (RNC), Michael Steele was charged with revitalizing the Republican Party. He is an expert on political strategy, fund-raising, PACs, and election reform. Steele made history in 2003 as the first African American elected to statewide office in Maryland, and again with his subsequent chairmanship of the RNC. A self-described "Lincoln Republican," he also served as Chairman of the GOPAC. Under Steele's leadership, the RNC broke fundraising records in the 2010 cycle by raising more than $192 million and Republicans won 63 House seats, the biggest pickup since 1938.
After serving almost 15 years in the Philadelphia City Council, Michael A. Nutter was elected the 98th Mayor of his hometown in November 2007 and took office in January 2008. At his inaugural address, Mayor Nutter pledged to lower crime, improve educational attainment rates, make Philadelphia the greenest city in America and attract new businesses and residents to the city. He also promised to lead an ethical and transparent government focused on providing high quality, efficient and effective customer service.
With the support of an experienced, professional staff, Mayor Nutter made significant progress on every pledge: homicides were at an almost 50 year low at the end of his tenure; high school graduation and college degree attainment rates increased significantly; Philadelphia added hundreds of miles in bike lanes and trails and launched the first low-income friendly bike share system in America, called Indego; and Philadelphia’s population grew every year since 2008, including the largest percentage of millennial population growth in the nation. He actively recruited businesses to set up shop in Philadelphia, both domestically and internationally with tax reforms, better business services and international trade missions. And, despite the damaging impact of the Great Recession, Philadelphia’s economy demonstrated significant growth – since January 2014, more than $11.5 billion of economic development projects have been completed, are under construction or announced.
Mayor Nutter made a commitment to strong financial stewardship, vigorously managing the City through the worst economic recession since the Great Depression. As a result, Philadelphia’s credit rating was upgraded to the “A” category by the three major credit rating agencies for the first time since the 1970s.
In 2013, Philadelphia City Council passed his Actual Value Initiative, the City’s first ever property assessment system overhaul, transforming a broken and corrupt system into a fair, accurate and understandable system.
In affiliation with the National League of Cities, Mayor Nutter and New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu launched Cities United, an initiative aimed at creating partnerships between cities, non-profits, and other stake holders to combat violence and crime among African-American men and boys. He also serves on President Obama’s My Brother’s Keeper Advisory Council.
In June 2013, Mayor Nutter concluded his tenure as President of the United States Conference of Mayors, which is the official non-partisan organization of almost 1,300 U.S. cities with populations of 30,000 or more. As President, Mayor Nutter represented the Conference by strengthening federal-city relationships and promoting the development of effective national urban policy. In June 2015, Mayor Nutter completed his year of service as President of the Pennsylvania Municipal League, which brings together municipal government officials from across the Commonwealth to advance policy initiatives state-wide.
In 2011, Esquire magazine named Mayor Nutter to its Americans of the Year list and in 2014, he was named Public Official of the Year by Governing magazine. During his tenure, Philadelphia City government received more than 150 awards for innovative programs, good government practices and excellence.
Since leaving public service on January 4, 2016, Mayor Nutter has remained active in public policy, government, and civic life. Since leaving office this year, a series of announcements were made demonstrating his continued commitment to public service and civic engagement. In January, the Department of Homeland Security announced that Mayor Nutter accepted an appointment to the Homeland Security Advisory Council. Also in January, Columbia University/SIPA announced his appointment as a Professor, and in March, the Board of Trustees voted to appoint him as the Inaugural David N. Dinkins Professor of Professional Practice in Urban and Public Policy. Also in February, Bloomberg Philanthropies announced his appointment as a Senior Fellow and national spokesperson for the What Works Cities program, working with Mayors all across the United States. In April, Drexel University announced that Mayor Nutter joined the Lebow College of Business as an Executive Fellow in Leadership, working with the Institute for Strategic Leadership (ISL). In July, Airbnb announced that Mayor Nutter will chair their first ever Mayor’s Advisory Council, an international group of former Mayors providing strategic advice on local government issues and public policy. In August, the University of Chicago Urban Labs announced that Mayor Nutter had been appointed to the position of Executive Fellow, the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia announced his appointment as a Member of the Economic and Community Advisory Council and the Chicago Council on Global Affairs announced his appointment as a Distinguished Fellow. In November, The Brookings Institution announced that Mayor Nutter had been appointed as a Distinguished Non-Resident Senior Fellow in the Metropolitan Policy Program. In December, Code for America announced that Mayor Nutter became a Board member. On January 3, 2017, Mayor Nutter became an Independent Director and Board member of the new publicly traded company, Conduent Corporation, the spin-off firm from Xerox Corporation. Mayor Nutter maintains active involvement in critical areas of education, media, public policy, political campaigns, the corporate community, and academic institutions across the country. He is active in the social media environment, and can be reached on Twitter @Michael_Nutter, or through his website WWW.MikeNutterLLC.com.
Mayor Nutter is a life-long Philadelphian, born and raised in West Philadelphia and educated at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. He has been dedicated to public service since his youth. Mayor Nutter is happily married to his wife Lisa, and. a proud parent to Christian and Olivia.
Michael Steele served as the first African-American chairman of the Republican National Committee, and former Lieutenant governor of Maryland, and the first African American elected to statewide office in Maryland. Until recently he was President and CEO of The Steele Group, a consulting firm working with institutional and individual clients to design overall business development, investor, networking, and communications strategies.
Mr. Steele is currently a political analyst for MSNBC. Mr. Steele’s ability as a communicator and analyst have long been showcased by his position as a contributor on the Fox News Channel and as a regular host for the Salem Radio Network’s nationally syndicated Morning in America Show. Additionally, Mr. Steele has been an entertaining and eloquent guest on cable political talk shows such as HBO’s Real Time with Bill Maher and Comedy Central’s Daily Show and The Colbert Report.
As chairman of the RNC, Mr. Steele was charged with revitalizing the Republican Party. A self-described “Lincoln Republican,” under Steele’s leadership the RNC broke fundraising records (over $198 million raised during the 2010 Congressional cycle) and Republicans won 63 House seats, the biggest pickup since 1938. His commitment to grassroots organization and party building at the state and local levels produced 12 governorships and the greatest share of state legislative seats since 1928 (over 600 seats).
As Lt. Governor of Maryland, Mr. Steele’s priorities included reforming the state’s Minority Business Enterprise program, improving the quality of Maryland’s public education system (he championed the State’s historic Charter School law), expanding economic development in the state and fostering cooperation between government and faith-based organizations to help those in need.
Mr. Steele writes a regular column for The Root.com and BET.com and his writings on law, business and politics have appeared in The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Times, Politico.com, Townhall.com, ,The Journal of International Security Affairs and Catholic University Law Review, among others. He is the recent author of Right Now: A 12-Step Program for Defeating the Obama Agenda, which is a call to arms for grassroots America.
Born at Andrews Air Force Base in Prince George’s County, Maryland, Mr. Steele was raised in Washington, DC. He spent three years in the Order of St. Augustine in preparation for the priesthood. He is a graduate of Johns Hopkins University (‘81’), Georgetown Law Center (’91), and an Aspen Institute Rodel Fellow in Public Leadership. Mr. Steele is a member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Landover Hills, MD, where he attends mass regularly with his wife Andrea.