Aerial view of the Phoenix skyline at sunset.

February 25, 2021

AZ Business Magazine

Phoenix mayors celebrate 140th anniversary of city’s incorporation

On the steps of historic Phoenix City Hall, Mayor Kate Gallego was joined today by fellow leaders to celebrate the 140th anniversary of the City of Phoenix.

Former mayors Terry Goddard (served 1984 to 1990) and Phil Gordon (served 2004 to 2011) each spoke of the vision they held for the city during their time in office, and what they see for the city’s future. Governor Roe Lewis of the Gila River Indian Community spoke of the area’s ancient history and the first peoples who lived in the region, learned to cultivate crops and channel water to thrive in the desert environment.

Mayor Kate Gallego spoke of the things that make modern Phoenix an extraordinary place: it is the fifth largest and fastest growing city in the nation, a leader in cutting-edge economic development, and an engaging community where people come to live, work, and play.

“Each mayor and leader who came before me was critical in shaping the legacy of Phoenix and I’m proud of what we’ve already been able to accomplish. As I look to the future, I see a city that is stronger, smarter, greener, and better,” said Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego. “While we still have much work to do, I have no doubt that we will tackle the work ahead with the same kind of gusto that caused a major city to rise out of the desert.”

“Phoenix is a big city—but it’s a young city, too. And over the course of its 140 years, this city hasn’t just grown, it’s flourished. We’ve made great progress in diversifying our economy, investing in higher education, attracting new, high-wage jobs, planning for our water future and building green infrastructure. And now, Phoenix is again poised to lead the region’s economic comeback. And make no mistake—none of that success is by chance. It’s a result of the choices and investments we’ve made, always with an eye towards the future, that the next 140 years in Phoenix look so bright,” said Congressman and former Mayor Greg Stanton.

“As the Valley’s original inhabitants, the Gila River Indian Community has lived side by side with the residents of Phoenix since the City’s formal founding in 1881. Everything our people do and everything Phoenix does as a city impacts each one of us. I thank Mayor Gallego for her leadership and for the opportunity to speak today. The Community looks forward to many more decades of cooperative, visionary partnership between the GRIC and the City of Phoenix. What we do together can make quality of life better for one and all — and for generations to come,” said Governor Roe Lewis.

A few of Phoenix’s accomplishments:

• Late last year, Phoenix landed the largest economic development deal in Arizona history, worth $12 billion , when the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company decided to place a new fabrication plant in north Phoenix.

• For the 8th year in a row, Phoenix received a perfect score for LGBTQ inclusion from the Human Rights Campaign.

• North Phoenix has now become one of the densest employment centers outside the downtown core, with a labor force of more than 45,000 people and over four hundred financial service and fin-tech companies.

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