David Cicillini

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David Cicillini (D), Mayor Providence, Rhode Island. Photo by Ron Schlittler.

David Cicillini (D)

Born 1961


Providence, Rhode Island

Career Overview

Elected House of Representatives November 1995, 1997

Came out April 1999

Re-elected 1999, 2001

Elected Mayor November 2002

Re-elected 2006

The Advocated reported in December 2002 that David Cicilline remembered being at the headquarters for his Providence, R.I., mayoral campaign when a prospective volunteer and voter walked in. "I was thinking of supporting your campaign," the man--a senior citizen and devout Catholic--told Cicilline. "But first, I want to know what your gay agenda is."

"That's easy," Cicilline responded. "My gay agenda is for government reform, improving neighborhoods, and strengthening schools."

News article about David Cicilline

Where everybody knows his name: A day after winning City Hall, Cicilline finds celebrity status

By Amanda Milkovits, Journal Staff Writer

Providence Journal, November 7, 2002

"The best thing I can do for the community, the city, and everyone who's watching is be the best mayor I can be." - Mayor-elect David Cicilline

PROVIDENCE - "Can we take a picture with you?" "Will you sign this for us?"

The day after the election, the Democratic victors traditionally gather at the Arcade downtown for a "victory tour" - shaking hands and thanking voters for their support.

But one winner got most of the attention.

As U.S. Sen. Jack Reed, U.S. Rep. James Langevin, Attorney General-elect Jack Lynch, and Lt. Gov. Charles Fogarty chatted with each other and gave interviews, the mayor-elect was greeting the pre-lunchtime crowd as if he were still campaigning.

"How are you, sir? I'm David Cicilline," he said, extending a hand to a man reading the sports section. The man quickly recognized him, and congratulated Cicilline.

Cicilline moved on, stopping people and introducing himself.

"I saw you on TV last night!" exclaimed an elderly man outside a deli.

The young women at Villa Pizza dug out a Polaroid camera and called to Cicilline to pose with them. Then they wanted his autograph.

"Congratulations!" James Santos, an officer for Johnson & Wales University, said as Cicilline walked toward him. "Well, I don't know if I should say congratulations or condolences . . ."

"Hard work never hurt anyone," Cicilline replied.

Hours off the campaign trail and into the first day as mayor-elect, Cicilline said he was still getting used to the title. He was the assumed favorite since winning the September primary, yet he corrected supporters who called him mayor.

His mother gave him a pin with the seal of the city to wear on primary night - like the one former Mayor Vincent A. Cianci Jr. received when he became mayor - but Cicilline said he won't wear it until he is sworn in.

Yesterday, he was getting used to the idea. It was strange not to have to ask people for their votes anymore, Cicilline said.

What does he say instead? "Thank you."

He called his sister, Susan Buonanno, in Narragansett to congratulate her on winning her election. Buonanno received more than 800 votes as a write-in candidate for the Narragansett School Committee. That makes two Cicilline siblings holding elected office in Rhode Island.

He had media interviews scheduled throughout the day, including a call from Advocate magazine, a gay and lesbian publication. His election made Providence the largest U.S. city to elect a gay mayor.

Cicilline understands the distinction, but says his sexual orientation played no role in his campaign. The issues did, he said.

Speaking before the polls closed and the election decided, Cicilline said, "The best thing I can do for the community, the city, and everyone who's watching is be the best mayor I can be."

Yesterday afternoon, he was a featured speaker at an awards luncheon of the Narragansett Council Boy Scouts of America.

A few years ago, the Narragansett Council pushed, unsuccessfully, to have the National Council for the Boy Scouts of America rethink its ban on homosexuals. The Rhode Island chapter asserted then, as now, that questions about sexual orientation are not relevant. Guiding youths and serving as role models are.

That was an unspoken message yesterday.

The luncheon was held to honor Dennis Langley, executive director of the Urban League, Bernard LaFayette, director of the University of Rhode Island Center for Nonviolence, and assistant school superintendent Tomas Ramirez for their work with boys from urban neighborhoods.

As he praised their work, Cicilline talked about his vision for comprehensive after-school programs, and he invited the scouts to become involved.

Crime rises among youths in the afternoon when school ends. Cicilline pointed to after-school programs in the Midwest, where students stay late for recreation programs, academic counseling, and clubs and organizations. Such as the Boy Scouts.

Attendance rises and crime drops, he said. Providence can do this, too. "I think the Boy Scouts have an important role," he said.

Cicilline was selling his ideas again, but as the mayor-elect.

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Robert Fagnant said ...
11:36, 14 November 2009 (PST)
Garbage buckets were picked up first in Providence and people brought them in because in this city contractors and people steal these containers when they are empty (use them for paint, etc., and we're not allowed to put your name on it)! However, after you buy enough containers at 700 Allens Ave., you learn to put your name on it. Doesn't matter, gets stolen anyway and the thief justs paints over it. Now you know, in Crime Providence where even Dunkin Donuts hides their sugar and salt and pepper on Chalkstone Ave., everything gets stolen. I have one big question. Why didn't you simply pick up big containers before the little buckets. That way, common sense 152 IQ I guess it takes, that if you did that- you would know who was trully violating the separation of plastics and paper laws! So, even if NO NOTE on the main container they let it stay on the streets- even with NO NOTE! A note was suppose to be put if NO containers but, again, people brought the small containers inside because no one knew about the policy. The big container trucks were suppose to look at the NOTE BUT THEY DIDN'T! Now, who's at fault now- why yes- the BIG CONTAINER UNION PRIVATE CONTRACTORS- that's who... so before you do IT'S the citizens fault guild trip, ask yourself WAS IT? NO NOTE meant the trash small buckets were there YOU IDIOTS!!!! So, the rats will have to eat our garbage and a few people told me they just threw theirs in the woods (maybe even the Scituate Reservoir for a protest- who knows where?). So much for your Green Initiative! Anyway, it's just one more thing for my 67 million opt-in emails my servers send out why not to visit Providence, home of tax payer nightmare, business non-friendly, and the new tax-acchusetts of NE where even 5 or less employees are taxed to death at 25k minimum before even one dollar is paid (mandatory insurance for W2 that is). Do you realize why people and small companies are moving out of RI? Do you think it might be the worst tax state to do business in? Excuse me, worst tax and garbage state to do business in!

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