Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price is among a list of more than 50 mayors worldwide vying for the honor of World Mayor Prize, but she needs votes to get there.
Unbeknownst to her, Price was included on the long list of nominees put forth by London-based City Mayors Foundation, a philanthropic group, according to its website. The organization awards the World Mayor Prize and Commendations every two years and was founded in 2004.
The award recognizes mayors who have made outstanding contributions to their communities and the 2018 honor will focus on female mayors, the group said.
"One of the aims of the World Mayor Project is to create greater awareness of and interest in local government as well as to encourage participation," said Tann vom Hove, principal of the City Mayors Foundation, in an email response to questions. "As you are probably aware voter turnout in municipal and mayoral elections is particularly low in the U.S. Turnout at last year’s local elections in Tarrant County was appallingly low at less than 9 percent of registered voters."
Price said she has no clue who nominated her, but said it is an honor and "kind of cool."
Vom Hove said that is the case.
"We generally do not contact mayors until we can confirm they have been shortlisted," vom Hove said. "Since 2011, Mayor Price has become one of the most influential and respected big-city mayors in the U.S."
To get there, Price needs residents to show their support, vom Hove said. The longlist will be open for about six weeks. The prize, and commendations for two runner-ups, will be awarded in early 2019.
That can be done at http://www.worldmayor.com/contest_2018/nominations-world-mayor-2018.html.
In all, 52 mayors from around the world are initially nominated by the organization to the longlist. Of those, 15 are from North America, including 11 from the U.S., two from Canada and one each from Puerto Rico and Mexico. Price is the female mayor of the largest U.S. city. Fort Worth is now the 15th largest U.S. city.
Three South American mayors are also on the list, as are 22 female mayors from across Europe, eight in Asia, and two each in Austrialia and Africa.
Only an estimated 20 percent of the world's mayors are women, the group said.
In 2016, the winner was Bart Somers, mayor of Mechelen, Belgium. The only U.S. mayor to be honored was in 2010. Mick Cornett, then mayor of Oklahoma City, was named a runner-up.