By Herald Staff
Cincinnati Vice Mayor Christopher Smitherman announced last week that he will not run for the office of mayor of Cincinnati in 2021.
Making the announcement one year following the death of his wife Pamela M. T. Smitherman from breast cancer, Smitherman said, “It was a moment that my children and I will never forget. We continue to grieve and to seek our new normal. This year has been one of reflection and careful decision making about our future.’’
He added, “As a widowed father of five, I have a higher calling at this time. I am determined to give my children as much love and attention as I can. Running for mayor would make that impossible.”
Smitherman, an Independent, said he will continue to serve as Vice Mayor, as chair of the Law and Public Safety Committee, co-chair of the Property Tax Group, as a member of the Economic Growth and Zoning Committee, a member of the Neighborhood Committee, a member of the Downtown Cincinnati Improvement District, and as a member of the Cincinnati Planning Commission. H said he would continue to serve with the highest ethics, transparency and thoughtful decision-making.
He thanked these organizations for support during his wife’s illness and since her death: Allen Temple, The Barrett Cancer Canter, Bellarmine Chapel, Clinton Hills Swim Club, The Greater Cincinnati Foundation, Corinthian Baptist Church, Hospice of Cincinnati, J.C. Battle and Sons Funeral Home, The Karen Wellington Foundation, North Avondale Montessori School, Spring Grove Cemetery, UC Health and Unity Missionary Baptist Church.
He said his decision defines a pause, not an end, to his political aspirations, and he looks forward to a return to the pursuit of higher service when the time is right.
“I wish to thank everyone who has supported me over these years. Serving the citizens of Cincinnati has been, and continues to be, my honor,” he said. “I continue to extend my deepest love and prayers to all of those families that are still fighting cancer or grieving the loss of a loved one. You are not alone.”
Although the filing date is months away, no other candidate has officially come forward for he seat.