ST. LOUIS – Life has been a whirlwind for Tishaura Jones. The new St. Louis mayor has been on the job for about two weeks. And thus far, she’s been on the go, from early mornings to often late evenings. FOX 2 spent a day tagging along with Mayor Jones on a recent Monday.
The day began with plenty of hustle and bustle: drop off son Aden, 13, to school; then head over to St. Louis County headquarters for a joint press conference with County Executive Sam Page.
But before they even left her home – she had important inquiry – one that she could not ignore – from her most ardent supporter.
“My dad,” she said. “He lives across the street. He saw your camera crew out front and was wondering, ‘What are you doing today?’”
Jones said living close to her father has been a huge help – the two are very close, and he helps with Aden.
Press conferences are standard for elected officials, but this particular one was especially important – it would mark the first joint effort between St. Louis City and the County to address COVID-19 regulations under Jones’ watch.
In fact, she was already taking questions from reporters, staked outside the building, as she entered the building.
“Any words for our constituents going forward here for the big changes coming today?” FOX 2’s Chris Regnier asked.
In the virtual press conference, Jones outlined the relaxing of Covid-19 rules for restaurants and bars.
“Today, I’m proud to take a big first step with the county executive to introduce new, Re-open STL Health Orders,” she said.
Twenty minutes later, she was downstairs – greeted by a number of supporters congratulating her on her new job.
The next stop was home base: St. Louis City Hall downtown.
She was in her office, discussing with her chief of staff what was on tap for the day and week.
Her scheduler and communications director also play key roles in her day-to-day matters.
As the former St. Louis Treasurer, Jones has visited the mayor’s office on a number of occasions. But this experience still requires an adjustment – now that the office is hers.
“It feels like a museum. It’s so big, and it’s beautiful,” she said.
It is a new experience for Jones – as well as the city. She is St. Louis’ first elected Black female mayor.
And she knows settling into the big office will mean filling some big shoes. She is acutely aware of the pressing issues facing the city.
“The violent crime keeps me up at night. Knowing that the solutions that I am proposing are not overnight solutions, and we didn’t get here overnight,” she said. “Any time that I receive a call about something that happened overnight, from either my chief of staff or public safety director, those are the things that break my heart every day.”
But Jones is addressing the issues one step at a time. On this particular day, she met with members of one of the top architectural and design firms for a conversation about neighborhoods.
And after that, she left for an off-site lunch with the St. Louis Public Schools Foundation.
It is a taxing job, no doubt. But for Jones, there are no regrets.
“It is definitely an honor and humbling experience. I’m here for it, and ready for the ride,” she said.