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9-Year-Old to Be Aberdeen’s Mayor. . . for a Day

A fourth-grader from St. Joan of Arc School in Aberdeen gets control of the town after winning the “If I Were Mayor, I Would” essay contest.

Mayor Michael E. Bennett with Kevin Ryan. Photo Credit: Executive Office of the Governor
Mayor Michael E. Bennett with Kevin Ryan. Photo Credit: Executive Office of the Governor
Fourth-grader Kevin Ryan from St. Joan of Arc School in Aberdeen will take over city hall on Tuesday, June 3, and learn more about his pet civic cause: caring for the homeless.

As a winner of the Maryland Municipal League’s “If I Were Mayor, I Would” contest, Ryan, 9, not only received a $100 cash Governor’s Citation presented by Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown, and a boat cruise of Annapolis on the Harbor Queen, but he was also invited by Mayor Michael E. Bennett to sit in as mayor for a day.

“I’m excited, ecstatic, and I am so proud of him,” Ryan’s mother, Veronica Ryan, told Patch. “It’s beyond words. I’m so proud of my little man.”

This year 11 winners -- one from each district -- were chosen out of over 2,100 entries.

“[I’m] very excited that one of our students has won this contest,” Mayor Bennett said. “I hope to show him what it is like to be mayor in this great city.”

Ryan’s entry focused on how he would help the homeless and less fortunate residents in the area if he were mayor. Veronica Ryan sent Patch a copy of the essay.

“If I were mayor, I would open a homeless shelter,” Kevin Ryan writes in the opening paragraph of his winning essay. “Sometimes when I am on my way to school, I will look out into the woods and see the homeless living in tents. When I go to the park, I will see homeless people sitting on the park benches. It is important to me because I don’t like to see people living like that. I would want to help them out and get them back on their feet.”

Veronica Ryan told Patch that everything he wrote came from his heart. “When he sees homeless people, he does feel bad,” she said.

During his stint as mayor of Aberdeen, Kevin Ryan will tour Ripken Stadium, visit the Water and Wastewater Plant, Department of Public Works and visit the Harford Family House, where he will learn about the programs offered to help the homeless and residents in need he wrote about. Kevin will finish his day as mayor by having a meeting with Mayor Bennett.

“[Kevin’s] working his little brain and he’s asking me questions because he was told that he gets to pick the place for lunch,” his mom said. “He’s a little nervous about it. He’s excited that the mayor is picking him up from school, and he’s excited for the police escort.”


v.carney June 03, 2014 at 07:30 AM
Its always nice to hear positive things.

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