City Council member Andrew Berman took the reins from Garry Lion as the new mayor of Mill Valley during a swearing in ceremony at Monday night’s final City Council meeting of the year.
This is Berman’s second time serving as mayor. A resident of Mill Valley for 20 years, he's served two terms on the City Council, and held the position from 2008 – 2009. He’s also served two terms on the Planning Commission as well as on the Hillside Development Advisory Committee. He currently serves as chairman of the Southern Marin Emergency Medical Paramedic System and the the Marin Telecommunications Agency, and is the vice chair of the Sewerage Agency of Southern Marin. Berman is also the Executive Vice President and General Manager at ePals Corporation.
His wife Sabra Grimberg and three of his four children, along with his parents Debby and Dave Berman who flew in from Stamford, Conn., applauded as his council members voted him into the position. Shawn Marshall also assumed the role of Vice Mayor.
Berman, along with other members of the Cit Council, thanked Lion for a successful year as mayor as he handed over the responsibility.
“The beautiful part of having you be our mayor for a year is you’ve brought a wealth of experience to us,” Berman said.
Council members were not short on praise for Lion, calling him a “steady and thoughtful leader,” a “sharp, tireless and very strategic champion of Mill Valley,” and a man with “integrity, a good attitude, and leadership ability.”
In a personal gesture of thanks, council member Ken Wachtel hand-crafted a wooden replica of a gravity car, calculated to be 1/700th of the full scale replica in the Depot Plaza. In 2008 Lion led the charge to repair and relocate the car to the plaza from Old Mill Park, where it was being vandalized.
Lion highlighted an extensive list of accomplishments during 2012 that included establishing mayor office hours in the community, developing an extensive emergency preparedness plan that’s considered a model for the region, forming advisory groups for the future of the Mill Valley Golf Course golf course and parking downtown, upholding an amended zoning ordinance that adds criteria for "formula businesses," setting a new sewer rate, and making progress on the Miller Street Implementation Plan.
“All in all, we tackled a heck of a lot this year,” Lion said. “This is not without a great deal of everyone’s help and hard work.”
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