When Mayor Thomas Ambrosino leaves it will be a loss of the first order for this city. The city will be losing a self assured administrator who has made a positive mark on this city during the past decade. He could have done anything when he graduated from Harvard Law School. But his choice was to stay in Revere and to advocate for the city he grew up in.
He is many things.
Above all, Mayor Ambrosino is an honest man, a lawyer always prepared, who never allowed the often times contentiousness and pettiness of local government to get him down or to derail him from going after what he believed was the best possible course to take for the well-being of this community.
For the past decade, he and he alone has been the undisputed leader of this city.
He is moral without being heavy handed about it. He is demanding at times, without issuing public warnings about performance to those whom he employs. He understands the protocol for running this city morally, socially, politically and economically. He has been the undisputed leader of this place in every way for the past decade – and frankly, it shows.
Until recently, he attended nearly every meeting of the city council out of respect – not only since he was once a city councilor himself – but also because it was before the city council that he advanced his agenda time and time again.
He was quite often attacked by a variety of the councilors who felt they could gain influence for themselves by opposing the mayor on new schools or by standing against him for a new police station or the new central fire station.
He never lost his cool. He always kept his eye on the prize. He didn’t care what the councilors had to say about him because he knew what he was doing was legally correct and justified by the obvious need such as new schools to replace much older and outdated ones. The dilapidated Revere Police Station was a step away from being condemned two years ago when he ordered up a new one. The same can be said of the turn of the century central fire station that was replaced.
He was opposed by the council heatedly because he borrowed millions and spent millions repairing this city’s antiquated and useless anti-flooding drainage system. Since he embarked on a series of major piping and drainage infrastructure replacements during the past ten years, there hasn’t been a single recent incident of flooding during heavy rains or high tides. In the past, flooding had been this city’s major plague.
He didn’t argue with the council. He always went to the people with his case. In the end, he got what he set out to do for the city.
Despite the vituperation of some of the councilors, he remained friendly with all of them throughout the years. As a leader, he showed the advantage of remaining loyal at all times to those who worked for him and accessible to the councilors whether they be friend or foe. And to the people of this city, who have streamed through his office over the years by the hundreds with every type of request or complaint – each of which the mayor would carefully consider and act on if necessary – treating the person always with dignity and respect.
The mayor is a private man. He is not a happy go lucky type walking around whistling and enjoying the day. He is in all ways a very serious guy on a mission. Those of us who know him and who respect him believe he is much more intense than nervous, much more interested in doing the right thing than winning a popularity contest.
As a public man, he was never seen out of sorts or unprepared on a single occasion in this city in a decade. He has epitomized class and higher intelligence in leadership in a city where governing is often made difficult by so many competing constituencies and by some people who like to shout and to point fingers. Everything he put his mind to for this city was done meticulously.
When the mayor finally leaves his office, whomever will be employing him will get a first class, top notch human being and administrator, a lawyer who knows what he’s doing, who studies every angle of every issue confronting him and who never moves forward with a development or a social initiative unless all the I’s have been dotted and the T’s crossed.
We lose the real thing when Tom Ambrosino leaves.