Gregory E. Fischer (born January 14, 1958) is a businessman and Mayor of
Louisville, Kentucky. He is a graduate of Louisville's Trinity High School and Vanderbilt University, entrepreneur, and community leader.
Fischer ran in the Kentucky Democratic primary for the United States Senate in 2008, where he finished second and received over 209,000 votes (34 percent) among seven candidates.
In November 2010 he was elected Mayor of Louisville in a tight race against city councilman Hal Heiner. He succeeded Mayor Jerry Abramson.
Fischer was born in Louisville to Mary Lee and George Fischer, graduates of Loretto High School and Flaget High School in Louisville, respectively, and has four siblings. Fischer's father was the CEO of MetriData Computing Inc. and Secretary of the Cabinet of Kentucky under Governor John Y. Brown, Jr.
Fischer attended Trinity High School in Louisville and graduated in 1976. He has since been inducted as a member of the school's hall of fame. After high school, Fischer attended Vanderbilt University, where he majored in Economics, graduating in 1980. To help pay for his education, Fischer worked summers as a crane operator on the fishing docks of Kodiak, Alaska unloading salmon boats. After his graduation, Fischer traveled solo around the world for a year, spending the bulk of his trip in Asia, before returning to Louisville.
Fischer announced his candidacy for Mayor of Louisville Metro in July 2009. On November 4, 2009, he became the first to file his letter of intent for the primary election on May 18, 2010.
A television advertisement for Fischer released in late March 2010 cites four priorities under his would-be administration: creating jobs, investing in clean energy, making metro government more transparent and building two new bridges over the Ohio River.
Fischer won the Democratic primary on May 18, 2010 with 45 percent of the vote. In the November 2 general election, he ran against Republican former council member Hal Heiner (plus two independent candidates) and won with 51% percent of the vote.
Fischer was sworn in as Mayor of Louisville Metro on January 3, 2011 and again on January 5, 2015.
Mayor Greg Fischer's Administration has centered on three main goals, "creating good-paying jobs, improving education at all levels, and making Louisville an even more compassionate city." Fischer also prides himself on a data-driven approach towards government efficiency. In 2013, Governing named Fischer a "Public Official of the Year", the only mayor honored that year.
During his first five years in office, the local economy added 58,209 jobs, and had the unemployment rate drop below 5%. In 2014, Fischer cut ties with the regional commerce organization Greater Louisville Inc., citing concerns over the organization's financial stability and leadership. Fischer then created a new Economic Development branch named Louisville Forward, creating 3,500 jobs and close to $500,000,000 in local investments its first 10 months, while being named one of the top 10 economic development groups in the United States. However, during his tenure, Louisville has struggled to catch up to neighboring metropolitan areas in percentage of "high paying jobs", ranking 9th out of 17th in the region.
Louisville, is the largest city in the Commonwealth of Kentucky and the 30th-most populous city in the United States. It is one of two cities in Kentucky designated as first-class, the other being the state's second-largest city of Lexington. Louisville is the historical seat and, since 2003, the nominal seat of Jefferson County.
Louisville was founded in 1778 by George Rogers Clark and is named after King Louis XVI of France, making Louisville one of the oldest cities west of the Appalachian Mountains. Sited beside the Falls of the Ohio, the only major obstruction to river traffic between the upper Ohio River and the Gulf of Mexico, the settlement first grew as a portage site. It was the founding city of the Louisville and Nashville Railroad, which grew into a 6,000-mile (9,700 km) system across 13 states. Today, the city is known as the home of the Kentucky Derby, Kentucky Fried Chicken, the University of Louisville and its Louisville Cardinals athletic teams, Louisville Slugger baseball bats, and three of Kentucky's six Fortune 500 companies. Its main airport is also the site of United Parcel Service's worldwide air hub.
Since 2003, Louisville's borders have been the same as those of Jefferson County because of a city-county merger. The official name of this consolidated city-county government is the Louisville/Jefferson County Metro Government, abbreviated to Louisville Metro. Despite the merger and renaming, the term "Jefferson County" continues to be used in some contexts in reference to Louisville Metro, particularly including the incorporated cities outside the "balance" which make up Louisville proper. The city's total consolidated population as of the 2014 census estimate was 760,026. However, the balance total of 612,780 excludes other incorporated places and semiautonomous towns within the county and is the population listed in most sources and national rankings.
The Louisville-Jefferson County, KY-IN Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), sometimes also referred to as Kentuckiana, includes Louisville-Jefferson County and 12 surrounding counties, seven in Kentucky and five in Southern Indiana. As of 2014, the MSA had a population of 1,269,702, ranking 43rd nationally.