2012 Ushers in a New Era for the City Winnecke Sworn in as Evansville Mayor

By Arek Sarkissian, II | Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current), January 2, 2012 | Go to article overview

2012 Ushers in a New Era for the City Winnecke Sworn in as Evansville Mayor


Arek Sarkissian, II, Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)


Shortly after being sworn in as Evansville's 34th mayor Sunday afternoon, Lloyd Winnecke said in his inaugural remarks that this week will be rife with changes that will move the city forward. The pace, he said, will provide citizens with an early example of how his administration will operate.

"In fact, the first week of our administration is jam-packed with activity," he said. "The pace of week one will be indicative of our approach to leadership."

Hundreds filed into The Victory to witness the inauguration, which included the swearing in of all nine members of the City Council and the new leaders of both the police and fire departments. Guests arrived at the theater about 11:30 a.m. while Winnecke, City Council members and appointed leadership were given a brief introduction in an office on the fourth floor. They signed the actual oaths shortly before being ushered downstairs to the waiting crowd.

The ceremony began with a performance by the Evansville Vanderburgh School Corp.'s Suessical Choir, then an invocation by the Rev. Adrian Brooks Sr., pastor of Memorial Baptist Church.

The ceremony, led by Linda E. White, president and CEO of Deaconess Health System, recognized outgoing two-term Mayor Jonathan Weinzapfel. A camouflage fishing hat covered with an assortment of lures was given to Weinzapfel as a joke, but in token of appreciation.

Weinzapfel said he spent his first morning out of office with his wife and children taking down Christmas decorations.

"It was a fairly quiet morning," Weinzapfel said, adding during his two previous inaugurations the day was far more hectic. "This is much easier than what it was eight years ago or four years ago."

The oaths of office for elected officials were given by a judge of the officeholder's choice. Vanderburgh County Superior Court judges Richard G. D'Amour and David Kiely were in attendance, as were U.S. District Judge Richard Young and Chief Justice Randall T. Shepard of the Indiana Supreme Court.

Shepard, who swore Winnecke into office, said he is con-fident under the new leadership the city will continue to improve. "I've noticed a growth in education here and I think that is very important," Shepard said. "I think and hope that would continue."

Incoming city Police Chief Billy Bolin and Fire Chief Mike Connelly were sworn in by Vanderburgh County Prosecutor Nick Hermann. …

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