Press Release

Mayor Ron Nirenberg of San Antonio Joins Mayors Migration Council Leadership Board

Geneva, Switzerland, December 15 — Today, the Mayors Migration Council (MMC) welcomed Mayor Ron Nirenberg of San Antonio (United States) to the MMC’s Leadership Board, the governing body providing strategic direction to the organization committed to accelerating ambitious global action on migration and displacement. 

Ron Nirenberg was first elected mayor in 2017 and was re-elected for a fourth term in May 2023. San Antonio’s first mayor of Asian Pacific Islander descent, he has taken a compassionate and equity-based approach to migration throughout his tenure in office. For example, Mayor Nirenberg secured federal funding to establish a Migrant Resource Center to support hundreds of thousands of asylum seekers from the US southern border and launched an online resource portal to welcome Afghan refugees. Under his leadership, San Antonio has also adopted an equity framework in budgeting to reduce poverty, improve public health, and overcome historical socioeconomic inequality.

“As the mayor of one of the nation’s fastest growing cities, I am honored to join this international leadership group of distinguished mayors and bring the voice and experiences of American cities to global policy discussions,” said Mayor Nirenberg. “As the Mayors Migration Council explores new thematic priorities to take on in 2024, I think there is a great potential to increase our focus on workforce development and other city-led pathways for the inclusion of migrants and refugees in our cities.”

Mayor Nirenberg has also actively served in leadership positions of several city alliances, including the US Conference of Mayors and Climate Mayors, a coalition to further climate action in more than 400 cities across the US.

“Cities like San Antonio are on the frontlines of some of our biggest international challenges from economic inequality to climate change, and they are leading the way in developing and delivering inclusive solutions that support their communities,” said Nina Hachigian, US Special Representative for City and State Diplomacy. “I look forward to working with Mayor Nirenberg to amplify city voices on migrant and refugee inclusion within national and global diplomacy.”

In his new leadership role, Mayor Nirenberg will ensure that the MMC’s mission and mandate are driven by and responsive to the needs of cities. Today, he joins an esteemed group of visionary mayors:

  • Yousef Shawarbeh, Mayor of Amman, Jordan; 
  • Marvin Rees, Mayor of Bristol, United Kingdom; 
  • Md. Atiqul Islam, Mayor of Dhaka North, Bangladesh; 
  • Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr, Mayor of Freetown, Sierra Leone; 
  • Erias Lukwago, Lord Mayor of Kampala, Uganda; 
  • Giuseppe Sala, Mayor of Milan, Italy;
  • Caroline Cosse, Mayor of Montevideo, Uruguay;
  • Valérie Plante, Mayor of Montréal, Canada; and 
  • Corine Mauch, Mayor of Zürich, Switzerland. 

“On behalf of the Mayors Migration Council, I am proud to welcome Mayor Nirenberg to our Leadership Board,” said MMC Executive Director Vittoria Zanuso. ““I look forward to working closely with this exceptional leader whose record is a testament to his dedication to migrants and refugees who call San Antonio home.”

Mayor Nirenberg was officially appointed during today’s Annual Meeting of the Leadership Board, taking place on the sidelines of the 2023 United Nations Global Refugee Forum in Geneva, Switzerland.  He joins in place of MMC founding member Eric Garcetti, who concluded his second term on the board earlier this year and played an instrumental role in helping mayors get a seat at the global policy table while serving as Mayor of Los Angeles. 

This week, MMC Leadership Board mayors are in Geneva to share their policy expertise and on-the-ground experience with UN Member States, as they assess progress made to achieve the Global Compact on Refugees and advance joint action to make this landmark agreement a reality.

Visit www.mayorsmigrationcouncil.org for more information.  For press inquiries, contact Cynthia Nahhas, Communications Associate at the Mayors Migration Council, at cnahhas@mayorsmigrationcouncil.org (cc: Maddy Troha, maddy.troha@berlinrosen.com). 

About the Mayors Migration Council

The Mayors Migration Council (MMC) is a mayor-led coalition that accelerates ambitious global action on migration and displacement. With most of the world’s migrants and displaced people living in cities, our mission is to use the power of city-led diplomacy and action to create a world where urban migrants, displaced people, and receiving communities can thrive. 

To achieve our mission, we provide mayors with advocacy, coordination, and communications support to influence policy decisions at the national and international level, and connect city governments to the knowledge, technical, and financial resources they need to accelerate and scale local solutions.

Created by mayors for mayors, we are a nimble team of political advisors and urban practitioners guided by a Leadership Board of global city leaders, including the Mayors of Amman, Bristol, Dhaka North, Freetown, Kampala, Milan, Montevideo, Montréal, and Zürich. As a Sponsored Project of Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors, our work is made possible by philanthropic and government funders.

To learn more visit www.mayorsmigrationcouncil.org or follow us on X, Facebook and LinkedIn.

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