January 1, 2024 -- Surrounded by family members and close friends, John Whitmire was sworn in as the City of Houston's 63rd mayor shortly after midnight on January 1, 2024.
The early morning swearing-in occurred in the City Hall Proclamation Room with Harris County Justice of the Peace Victor Trevino, III, delivering the oath of office as Whitmire placed his left hand on a bible held by his daughters, Whitney Whitmire Jenkins and Sarah Whitmire.
Following the brief ceremony, the new mayor of the nation's 4th largest city vowed his administration would be one of 'total transparency' while he also spoke about the greatness of Houston.
"We have a great city with great people, and we must do everything possible to ensure Houston goes forward and becomes greater. From our Medical Center to our Port to the Spaceport, we will do everything we can," said Mayor Whitmire.
Immediately following the joyous occasion, the mayor joined Police Chief Troy Finner for a ride-along throughout some of Houston's neighborhoods to witness the challenges faced by first responders and put public safety in the spotlight.
"I am making public safety my highest priority from day one,” he said, “supporting our officers and improving public safety for all our communities. Chief Finner and I are going to go to scenes throughout the morning to show our appreciation for first responders and let the citizens of Houston know that we have no higher priority than to do everything we can to make this a safer city, and I know we can do it. I know that officers are fired up to work for Chief Finner and Mayor Whitmire. Let's go to work."
In addition to focusing on public safety, Mayor Whitmire has also promised to create a balanced and transparent budget, improve city services, such as garbage pickup, restructure the permitting office, address homelessness, clean up illegal dumping, and upgrade infrastructure, including the water system, flooding, and drainage.
The official public inauguration of Mayor Whitmire, City Controller Chris Hollins, and Houston City Council is scheduled for 9:30 a.m. Tuesday, Jan. 2, at the Wortham Theater Center.