City Council President Loretta C. Scott will not be running for re-election in 2021.
Scott has dedicated more than 30 years to the city, according to a news release Jan. 29 that announced her decision to retire from public service.
In her announcement, Scott quoted Susan B. Anthony: “The older I get, the great power I seem to have to help the world; I am like a snowball — the further I am rolled the more I gain.”
“We are all like snowballs, the sum of our experiences collectively packed together over the years, and propelled forward by the hands of others,” Scott said in the news release. “This is how I have felt as Council President – that I’ve been given the privilege of helping guide change for our City, and that so many have laid their hands on me to help me move in the right direction.”
Scott served three terms on City Council and was elected president in 2014.
Prior to her time on council, Scott served as Commissioner of Parks, Recreation, and Human Services, the first Black woman to head a city department.
“President Loretta Scott has been a trailblazer, and a shining example of a public servant, for her entire career,” Mayor Lovely Warren said in a news release. “She has been steadfast in her work to lift up all people, particularly our Black and Brown residents, and always believed that a more just world benefits us all. I have been glad to be her colleague and partner, and will always be grateful for her counsel and wisdom. I wish President Scott nothing but the best moving forward and am eager to continue our work together during her final year on City Council.”
When Scott first was elected to City Council, she was quickly labeled the “jobs lady,” as she focused on fair, livable wages for all residents, according to the news release. She advocated for youth and children, supported environmentally friendly initiatives, sought equal housing rights, and worked with the business community as a small business owner herself.
During the past year, Scott helped lead the city through the COVID-19 pandemic and the continued battle against racism.
“We have a problem with racism in our society,” she wrote. “It is embedded in the very structures of our institutions and systems. That is why I fought so hard to create a Police Accountability Board. Because, as a mother, grandmother, and great grandmother of black children, I have had hard conversations and seen a broken public safety system.”
Scott wrote that she will continue to collaborate with the administration and her colleagues on council to put into place policies that change the culture of the Rochester Police Department.
“2021 will be a year of promise, possibility, and progress,” she wrote, thanking all who have supported her over the years. “I believe in Rochester, I believe in the future of this City, and it has been the honor of a lifetime to serve as the City Council President.”