Andrew Ginther is the 53rd Mayor of Columbus. So far, he has managed to win not one but two elections for said position, with the second time being an uncontested victory. Time will tell whether Ginther will seek higher offices in the future in Ohio.
1. Born in Columbus, OH
Ginther was born in Columbus, OH. Said city is one of the most populous cities that can be found in the American Midwest, beaten out by Chicago, IL for the top position. It is interesting to note that the Columbus metropolitan area was once a center of the Mound Builders, who are named thus because of their building of earthen mounds for religious, elite residential, and other purposes. Nowadays, most of the local mounds are situated outside of Columbus, OH. However, there is one that has been incorporated into Campbell Memorial Park.
2. Grew Up in Clintonville
On a related note, Ginther was raised in a Columbus, OH neighborhood called Clintonville. The neighborhood is named for George Clinton, who was a Governor of New York as well as a Vice President of the United States of America. He is remembered as someone who had supported the establishment of a stronger federal government than what had been laid out by the Articles of Confederation but turned into an opponent because he was fearful that the ability to impose tariffs would cut into his state’s main source of income. Besides that, Clinton is remembered for threatening to invade Vermont, which happened because there were a lot of settlers in the region who were very upset by New York’s refusal to recognize property claims based on New Hampshire law, thus resulting in considerable resistance to New York control.
3. Went to Earlham College
For his education, Ginther went to Earlham College. In short, the school started out as a high school for Quaker adolescents but changed into its present form over time. Nowadays, Earlham College remains affiliated with the Quakers, which is why it still has a strong emphasis on Quaker values such as integrity, mutual respect, and a commitment to social justice.
4. Studied Political Science
Perhaps unsurprisingly, Ginther studied political science at Earlham College. In particular, he seems to have focused on peace and conflict resolution, which is much more challenging than it might seem on initial consideration. In fact, Ginther even went to Northern Ireland for this purpose. Something that is notable because he would’ve headed there towards the end of the Troubles, which tends to be considered to have come to a conclusion with the Good Friday Agreemnt of 1998.
5. Was an Intern at the Carter Center
For a time, Ginther was an intern at the Carter Center. Based on the name, it should come as no suprise to learn that the Carter Center was founded by former President Jimmy Carter. As for its purpose, the nonprofit is focused on advancing human rights as well as alleviating human suffering, with the result that it encompasses a very wide range of activities. Ginther served consecutive internships so that he could teach children how to resolve disputes, which is a social skill that can be learned in the same manner as any other social skill.
6. Has a Passion for Columbus, OH Education
It is interesting to note that Ginther has a passionate interest in Columbus, OH education. Something that might be connected to how he was inspired by his own fourth-grade teacher. In any case, it was this passionate interest that convinced Ginther to run for the Columbus Board of Education. His first campaign was a failure. However, his second campaign proved to be much more successful, with the result that he served for six years on the board thanks to a later reelection.
7. Served on the Columbus City Council
Besides the Columbus Board of Education, Ginther has served on the Columbus City Council as well. Initially, this happened because he was named to serve out an unfinished term when his predecessor resigned. However, Ginther was elected more than once, with the result that he was the Council President by the end. As for his responsibilities in this time period, the Columbus City Council is very similar to its counterparts in other U.S. cities, meaning that it is responsible for local law-making.
8. 48th Person to Serve as Mayor of Columbus
Earlier, it was mentioned that Ginther is the 53rd Mayor of Columbus. However, he is the 48th person to serve in said position, which can be explained by the fact that five of those individuals served non-consecutive terms.
9. Promised to Return $66,000 in Donations
Recently, Ginther made a promise to return about $66,000 in donations that funded his State of the City address and was expected to fund other events. This happened because the Ohio Ethics Commission was concerned that the donations could be a violation of state laws. Something that can be explained by the fact that a lot of the donations came from city vendors, meaning that there was a potential for conflicts of interest. In any case, it has been said that soliciting donations from city vendors happens throughout much of the state on a regular, though Ginther has promised that his office will work with the commission to clear up the circumstances under which it is and isn’t permitted to happen.
10. Requiring Independent Investigation of Police-Related Deaths
Columbus, OH saw protests over police brutality. As a result, Ginther has signed an executive order that requires police-related deaths in his city to be investigated by the Bureau of Criminal Investigation overseen by the state’s Attorney General. This is meant to provide the public with increased trust in the findings that come out of such investigations, which are now carried out by an independent third party. In the long run, this promises to make for better policing as well, not least because increased trust in law enforcement tends to make people much more willing to cooperate with it in one way or another.