Michael R. Bloomberg is an entrepreneur and philanthropist who served three terms as Mayor of New York City, from 2002 through 2013.
Bloomberg was first elected in November 2001, less than two months after the terrorist attacks of 9/11, a time when many believed that crime would return, businesses would flee, and New York would take decades to recover. Instead, under Mayor Bloomberg’s leadership, the city – and lower Manhattan – came back stronger and faster than anyone expected.
From his first day in office, when he spent time with the men and women working at Ground Zero, Mayor Bloomberg made rebuilding lower Manhattan – in ways that would honor all those killed that day – a top priority. But by 2006, plans for building a memorial had stalled as its budget soared, and concern grew that it would never be built. To avert a crisis in public confidence, and to fulfill the city’s obligation to all those who lost loved ones, Bloomberg took charge of the Memorial’s development and became the Chairman of the National September 11 Memorial & Museum.
As Chairman, he set a single, clear goal: open the Memorial by the 10th anniversary of the attacks. To achieve that goal, Bloomberg worked to bring the budget under control by streamlining construction. He rallied public and philanthropic support behind the project, raising more than $450 million. And he helped forge consensus among families and stakeholders on the Memorial’s design. On September 11, 2011 – the 10th anniversary of the attacks – the Memorial opened to 9/11 family members, and the following day it opened to the public.
Since leaving public office, Bloomberg has continued to serve as Chairman of the National September 11 Memorial & Museum and has remained deeply involved in the work to open the Museum in May 2014.