Former Indianapolis Mayor Stephen Goldsmith Becomes Deputy to NYC’s Mayor Bloomberg

According to the Daily News, former Indianapolis mayor Stephen Goldsmith has been chosen to be appointed “deputy mayor” for a key position in the New York Police Department. To some, this was a surprising choice on NYC’s Mayor Bloomberg’s part, but Hoosiers from Indianapolis will no doubt understand. Goldsmith is one of the most famous people from Indianapolis‘ recent political arena.

Former Mayor Goldsmith’s focus during his two-term tenure as the Mayor of Indianapolis, beginning in 1992, was to renew long-neglected historic and otherwise important neighborhoods, especially in the Indianapolis downtown sector. His time in office became the foundation for a rebirth of the center of the Circle City and the downtown urban neighborhoods. Doubtless, it was this kind of affinity for shaking things up that attracted Mayor Bloomberg to Goldsmith for the New York post. Bloomberg calls Goldsmith a “compassionate conservative,” and is replacing deputy mayor Ed Skyler with Goldsmith today.

An articulate video interview of Stephen Goldsmith on the Charlie Rose program, on the general subject of urban renewal


Indy’s son Goldsmith earned a reputation as a government innovator and developmental powerhouse, though his detractors claim his methods put the city into debt. Some of Stephen Goldsmith’s accomplishments in public office as mayor, include:

  • Created “Building Better Neighborhoods,” a highly-touted program introducing practical solutions to bricks-and-mortar dilemmas.
  • Instrumental in making the Circle Centre Mall a reality, which precipitated an explosion of commercial and tourist activity in the heart of downtown Indianapolis.
  • Introduced changes that streamlined government bureaucracy, lowered taxes and unearthed over $400 million in the city’s coffers, which he reinvested to transform downtown and other urban areas.
  • Other improvements that came about with the renewal of downtown Indy include the vast remodel of the star Indianapolis attractions such as the Indiana Convention Center, the Conseco Fieldhouse, the NCAA headquarters and the massive renovation of Union Station.
  • Created the “Front Porch Alliance,” a program that matches government funds and expertise with neighborhood and church groups for their improvement.
  • In 1999, then-Mayor Stephen Goldsmith directed over $100 million worth of tax breaks toward the Eli Lilly and Company to increase their workforce by 7,500.

Goldsmith made a bid for Governor of Indiana, but was defeated by a close margin. He went on to serve President George W. Bush as chief domestic policy advisor during the 2000 campaign, and went on to the position of Special Advisor to the President on issues regarding non-profit initiatives.

In this short video blurb, you can see Steve Goldsmith talking about the Better, Faster, Cheaper website in his position as director of Harvard Kennedy School’s Innovations in American Government Program.


In 2001, Stephen Goldsmith was appointed Chairman of the Corporation for National and Community Service’s Board of Directors. He was named a Chairman Emeritus for the Center for Civic Innovation of the Manhattan Institute, and sits on the boards of many related and influential organizations, such as Homes for Working Families, the Fannie Mae Foundation, the Smith Richardson Foundation, Anacostia Waterfront Corporation and the Finish Line Corporation, a home-grown company that is one of the top 25 companies in Indianapolis business.

Born in 1946 in Indianapolis, Stephen “Steve” Goldsmith was evidently destined to spread his wings outside of Indiana. It remains to be seen when–and if–he’ll come back home again.

Books by Stephen Goldsmith: Governing by Network, Putting Faith in Neighborhoods, The Twenty-First Century City: Resurrecting Urban America, The Entrepreneurial City: A How-To Handbook for Urban Innovators

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