Bernard C. “Jack” Young was formally sworn in as Baltimore’s 51st mayor Thursday afternoon, finalizing the passage of power that began when former mayor Catherine Pugh began a leave of absence in April.
The swearing-in ceremony was not technically necessary -- Young officially entered the mayor’s office after Catherine Pugh resigned amid scandal one week ago. Instead, as Young and his team say, the ceremonial event at the War Memorial across from City Hall was meant to acknowledge the pain the city felt from Pugh’s scandal and to look ahead to a more stable future.
“For those of you that don’t me,” Young told the crowd of more than 600, “my name is Jack.”
He ran through a long list of thank you’s — to the residents of Baltimore for being resilient through a tumultuous period of scandal, to the council members for their steadfast leadership and focus and to state leaders who pledged to support the new administration.
Governor Larry Hogan, who called for Pugh’s resignation after the FBI and IRS raided several properties connected to her, praised Young for stepping up in her stead.
Young had been serving as acting mayor for about five weeks after Pugh took leave.
“You have my full and continued support,” Hogan said.
“Today marks an opportunity for all of us,” he continued. “With new leadership, we now have this opportunity to rededicate ourselves to finding solutions to finding real solutions to the serious problems facing the city.”
Adrienne Jones, the newly elected Speaker of the Maryland House of Delegates, also spoke at the ceremony and praised Young.
“He’s the best man for the job,” she said.
Young previously served as City Council President for nearly a decade.
Earlier this week, the council unanimously elected former Councilman Brandon Scott to fill Young’s shoes.