Richard Lewis Ready to Take Over as Traverse City Mayor

Traverse City will have a new mayor.

Mayor-elect Richard Lewis ran uncontested and will replace mayor Jim Carruthers.

Richard Lewis is currently serving as interim city manager for Evart, but he will be the Mayor of Traverse city on Monday and is no stranger to the area.

Lewis was a Traverse City commissioner from 2015 to 2017. Before that, he was the city manager for 17 years. He believes his experience will help him in his new role.

“Having a greater appreciation for all that I’ve been through in my career. I’ve been privileged to do in my career. I can hopefully help lead and guide and give input to all of us. And at least get ourselves focused,” said Traverse City Mayor-Elect, Richard Lewis.

The shoes Lewis is filling won’t be easy, but he’s ready for the challenge.

“We have some key issues that are no secret; there’s the infrastructure we need to work on, social issues such as homelessness, affordable, attainable housing, we’ve got a master plan that needs to be updated,” said Lewis. “One thing I could promise anyone we are going to make some people upset, and I’ve been in it long enough to know that is just the way it is.”

When it comes down to the big decisions, it’s a team effort. Lewis says not to let the five-letter word mayor get into anyone’s head because he is one of seven and has no more authority than the other six.

Lewis just wants the place he calls home the best it can be.

“I’m still living in the same place I’ve lived for 29 years. I have four daughters who live in the area and 18 grandchildren who also live there,” said Lewis. “The health and viability of the city, everything Traverse City brings to itself and into the broader community is very important.”

Lewis’ two-year term starts Monday.