When Marvin Rees was elected in May 2016, he became the first directly elected mayor of Black African heritage of any major European city.

Why you should listen

Mayor Marvin Rees has navigated the city of Bristol through some formidable challenges: national austerity measures, Brexit, the climate and ecological emergencies, protestors hauling down the statue of a slaver and, of course, COVID-19. He has pioneered new approaches to city leadership through the One City approach, championed social programs like Stepping Up and built thousands of new affordable homes. He strives to drive ambition, confront social immobility, promote economic inclusivity and improve life for all his city's residents.

Before taking office, Rees worked at the international development agency Tearfund, was a broadcast journalist at the BBC and a program manager for the National Health Service. He was re-elected as mayor in 2021.

Marvin Rees’ TED talk

More news and ideas from Marvin Rees

Live from TED2022

Cities: Notes from Session 9 of TED2022

April 13, 2022

The future of cities is inextricably tied to the future of humanity. They’re sites of innovation, culture, community building — and, at the same time, home to some of the world’s most intractable problems, like homelessness and pollution. In Session 9 of TED2022, six speakers explored an intentionally provocative whiplash of ideas tied to city […]

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