Jordan Hess was sworn in as Missoula’s new mayor at 2:15 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 14.
“I can’t be John Engen and I think it would be a disservice to our community if I tried,” Hess said at the swearing-in ceremony. “What I can commit to being is I will try, to the best of my ability, to be the leader we need right now.”
The veteran city councilmember will serve at least until the November 2023 election, at which time the general public will have the opportunity to vote for Missoula’s next leader.
In the next 14 months, Hess aims to continue the late Engen’s legacy initiatives, while also making some key divergences from his predecessor.
“One thing that I learned from John (Engen) was that he was an evangelist of making incremental steps in the right direction,” Hess said Tuesday in an interview with the Missoulian. “And I think that everything we do should be furthering our Strategic Plan. And everything we do, it might be a tiny little step, but it should be something that we can measure as being a step in the right direction toward accomplishing our goals.”